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Jump into a conversation or start a new one. Faculty are invited to share their concerns or insights on a wide-range of topics relevant to the university. Contributors should show each other mutual respect.

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Anonymous
3 days ago
Anonymous
2 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I hope that the Pope’s article is reprinted by CUA’ student newspaper, The Tower.

And maybe President Garvey will weigh in with his support as well.

Stay tuned.

Anonymous
7 days ago

All –

When I was a student at CUA back in the 1950’s, our basketball games against Mount St Mary’s college in Emmitsburg, PA were memorable.

Here’s a nice story about “The Mount” and how it is dealing with life today.

See

https://www.insidehighered.com/admissions/article/2020/11/23/mount-st-marys-has-unusually-successful-year-admissions?utm_source=Inside+Higher+Ed&utm_campaign=4b1752ec0a-DNU_2020_COPY_02&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_1fcbc04421-4b1752ec0a-236411834&mc_cid=4b1752ec0a&mc_eid=0ee291b326

I wish CUA could have a similar story.

Stay well.

Anonymous
7 days ago

As a follower of this forum, I remain baffled by why its faculty sponsors believe it in their best interests to PUBLICLY disseminate one indictment of the university after another: a school described by a faculty member as one that admits “anyone who can breath”; relentless attacks on the competence — and sometimes the character — of university leadership; the highlighting of lack of resources; musing about the school’s odds of even surviving. It would be one thing if such commentary circulated in a closed community of faculty and administrators. But it’s deliberately made public. Think of what inferences are… Read more »

A Friend of CUA
6 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Dear Anonymous – I must respectfully disagree with your posting. In my opinion, the Faculty Assembly’s public discussion board is fairly moderated and it serves a very useful purpose by promoting transparency. The only way we can improve CUA is to correctly identify its problems and then for the faculty, staff and administration to work collaboratively to solve the problems. I believe that prospective students, their parents, donors and prospective faculty members will appreciate such transparency. Hiding or ignoring our problems with the hope that no one will notice them is not an effective strategy for saving CUA. I hope… Read more »

Anonymous
6 days ago

In what manner will prospective students, parents or donors “appreciate” the relentless criticism of the school that appears in this forum? How will that “appreciation” manifest? By a student deciding, “yeah, I want to apply to a school that admits anyone who breathes”? By a parent who exclaims, “yeah, I want to spend a couple hundred thousand dollars in tuition for a school where the faculty say they lack resources and appear to be miserable but unable to leave because they can’t find better jobs”? By a donor saying, “yeah, of all the places I can gift my money, this… Read more »

A Friend of CUA
6 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

‘If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen’
I appreciate transparency but clearly, you do not.

As a CUA alum, a former adjunct, a former advisory board member and a long-time donor and I still want to help CUA in spite of its many failings that are often featured on the FA discussion board.

If you can’t stand the criticism, you are obviously free to leave but you are not free to stifle the criticism.

Anonymous
6 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The bafflement is forgivable, as it can only stem from not knowing much about the history of CU over the last decade-plus. In that time, under John Garvey and this Board, the faculty have been sidelined, silenced, ignored, diminished and derided. Excluding the yes-men and yes-women, most faculty have been virtually exiled from the university as any kind of “institutional home.” But even while support for research and graduate education was being systematically strangled, and shared governance cynically squelched, for years faculty made many earnest and good-faith attempts to be heard, to urge prudent structural change, and to effect improvement… Read more »

Anonymous
5 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Sounds to me like cutting your nose to spite your face, but time will tell whether your strategy hurts or helps. So far, I haven’t seen any reasoned articulation of HOW it can help more than hurt.

Anonymous
5 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

This is a great question and one that is important to consider. I will use the analogy of having a serious chronic illness such as cancer. It’s a disease that eats at the body from the inside out. In 2014, the full professors went to the doctor (BoTrustees) with a vote of no confidence on the president while the illness was in Stage 1, still addressable with proper action. The BoT ignored the vote and re-appointed Garvey. In 2018, the entire faculty again expressed a vote of no confidence in the president and provost for lack of leadership, vision, and… Read more »

Anonymous
5 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I’m questioning the public nature of the forum. Telling the world about every claimed shortcoming of the institution (often in the harshest terms — e.g., ”admits anybody who breathes”) does not help an institution that is dependent on the positive opinion of outsiders, namely students and donors. Nor does it help those dependent on the institution for employment, like faculty. Again, how does publicly trashing your professional home help you, either personally or professionally? You are not treating, much less curing, the disease; you are weakening the patient.

Anonymous
9 days ago

This story in The Tower (see below) about the difficulty undergraduates have in finding classes is the direct consequence of CUA’s gutting of our graduate programs. What the administration does not understand is that a strong graduate program benefits our undergraduates. Tuition remission is NOT a loss of money to CUA; our graduate programs make money. Graduate students are some of our best teachers, and no outside adjunct would teach a course for the little we pay our graduate students. We were founded as a graduate institution. But we have completely lost our way and are now adrift. The bishops… Read more »

Anonymous
8 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Unfortunately, bean counters look at the potential revenues lost rather then the services gained from support of graduate students. Further, there is no line item on an accounting statement for “supports mission of the university.”

Anonymous
6 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

This is exactly right, the fallow harvest of John Garvey foolish gutting of research and graduate programs

Anonymous
5 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

What specific “research and graduate programs” has Garvey “gutted”?

Anonymous
10 days ago

I thought that the 3 Nov 2020, Bredhoff and Kaiser letter to CUA’s general counsel was very well written.

Did I miss CUA’s response to the letter?

Anonymous
10 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

She refused to discuss it with him. Refused to allow him to enter into discussions with any other representatives of the CUA administration. Garvey refused to take a meeting with the FA Executive Board if the lawyer was present. In a meeting with Garvey he insisted it was his sincere hope that the retirement and pending salary cuts would be restored but refused to enter into any agreements that would bind him to that promise.

Anonymous
9 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

CUA President Garvey’s behavior in this regard is certainly very disappointing. And clearly, Ms O’Connor takes her orders from Garvey. Given that Garvey is a former law professor and law school dean, his refusal to take a meeting with the FA Executive Board if its outside counsel was present begs the question – what is Garvey afraid of? The fact that the FA has retained outside counsel must have Garvey quite worried. Of course, the FA Executive Board doesn’t really need to have its outside counsel present at any meeting with Garvey. They can simply report the results of the… Read more »

Anonymous
9 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Is anyone surprised? Bredhoff and Kaiser is one of the most formidable employment law firms in the country. Reason to be worried.

Anonymous
8 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

post a copy of the letter for those who haven’t seen it?

Admin
Reply to  Anonymous

It is posted online already, here: https://cuafacultyassembly.com/november-fa-meeting/

Anonymous
13 days ago

Would it be possible to hold the FA meetings in the evening in order to avoid conflict with class schedules?

Anonymous
12 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I feel the same way about the Town Hall!

A Loyal But Puzzled Alum
13 days ago

Significance of An Institution’s Name Dear Friends of CUA – Ask yourselves – Can CUA Really Justify Calling Itself, “The Catholic University of America”? As a CUA alumus, I’ve always been a bit embarrassed by the sobrique, “The Catholic University of America” – especially given our disappointingly low national ranking compared to Georgetown, Notre Dame, Villanova and Boston College to cite just a few US Catholic Universities. It’s a bit late, but maybe, CUA should simply call itself, “A Catholic University of America” Or maybe CUA should refer to itself as “The Pontifical University of the Catholic Church in the… Read more »

Anonymous
12 days ago

This’ll never happen. The definite article has been used by the President and the Board as a cudgel over and against less radically orthodox places. They love it. The point is taken though given CU’s comparative mediocrity. Don’t make the mistake of thinking of CUA as a pontifical university however. It is not a pontifical university. It’s presbyteral.

Anonymous
11 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

On three occasions in 130 years a pope briefly visited the campus – big deal. Meanwhile the vast majority of the US laity is blithely unaware of the school.

Anonymous
16 days ago

Most prominent newspaper in America today runs big story on the controversy over Pope John Paul II. A number of experts are quoted, including one from Notre Dame. Nothing from anyone at “The” CUA. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/14/world/europe/john-paul-vatican.html?action=click&module=Top%20Stories&pgtype=Homepage

A Cynical Roman Catholic
16 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Dear Anonymous – I’m confident that you are well aware that the national shrine to St Pope John Paul II is located adjacent to CUA. Given that fact and Mr McCarrick’s historic connection to CUA, I’m not surprised that no CUA “expert” has commented to the press. If the Saint Paul II shrine were located on or adjacent to Notre Dame’s campus, I suspect that Notre Dame experts might be a bit more circumspect. Same for Georgetown and Villanova and Boston College. Lesson learned – the Roman Catholic Church needs to spend much more effort stamping out sex abuse by… Read more »

Anonymous
14 days ago

My point is not that CUA was circumspect when asked, but rather that there is no indication anybody from CUA was asked to comment, because despite its claim to be “The” CUA, it’s not widely seen as such.

Anonymous
17 days ago

Here’s a typical example of how CUA can’t get stuff right, even when they have complete control over it. The following university web page makes this claim: “The event will serve as a feature of the Light the Way Campaign, the University’s first-ever comprehensive philanthropic campaign, which has garnered $333.5 million out of its $400 million goal.” See: https://communications.catholic.edu/news/2020/11/navigating-this-moment.html (penultimate paragraph). But when you go to the “Progress Toward Goal” diagram at the bottom of the Light the Way web site, you see progress of only $325.6mm, a difference of $8mm: https://engage.catholic.edu/about/light-way-campaign-catholic-university There’s just an amateurish aspect to the university’s execution… Read more »

Anonymous
12 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Since the post immediately above was published, the “Light the Way” website was updated to say the campaign has achieved $333.5mm of it $400mm goal. That’s an $8mm increase over the previously reported total. I don’t recall any announcement of gifts adding up to $8mm that explains that change. Are these numbers made up?

Old Alum
18 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

As a CUA alum from the 1960’s, I don’t brag about Jon Voight’s connection to CUA.

But that’s OK since I can’t recall Voight ever acknowledging CUA for what he gained from his CUA experience including studying under the legendary Father Gilbert Hartke in the Speech and Drama Department in the early 1960’s.

And that is probably a good thing for CUA given Voight’s current sad and inane embrace of our about to be former President Trump.

Anonymous
18 days ago
Reply to  Old Alum

Yeah, but there’s that whole other wing of successful arts alums — Sarandon, for example — who don’t acknowledge the place either because its repressive ideology alienates them. So CUA, for most of its history, and unlike most colleges, has been unable to benefit from the loyalty of its most prominent alumni. What other university manages to get itself into this position?

Anonymous
19 days ago

FYI – “Other higher ed institutions are taking down statues on campus. Here’s why we are installing one.” In this article, CUA President Garvey writes that, “Another is countering the notion that any individual’s or group’s claim to any part of the American dream is more valid or valued than another’s. He also states that, “It is our hope that everyone who pauses on our campus to look at Angels Unawares will consider the humanity in every person featured in that tiny boat—and thus the humanity in each of us.” This begs the obvious question – Does President Garvey now accept the… Read more »

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

You know the answer; it’s never going to change; CUA is on the wrong side of history. On the other hand, Garvey writes better than anyone in the university, and he’s willing to labor to get the school’s name out there, albeit in publications with circulations smaller than the pre-COVID population of a Metro car.

A Moderate
18 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I seriously hope that Garvey is not the “best writer within the university”. Advertising blah-blah does not count as great writing.

But the fact is that Garvey sure seems to be CUA’s senior leader in hypocritical actions and comments.

I hope that my observations on CUA’s leader won’t be censored and removed from this discussion site.

Because, if others in the FA community feel that I am mistaken about President Garvey, I would like to learn why.

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

It’s a cool statue and it’s cool that it will be on the CUA campus.

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

This is neither a statue nor a monument, but a sculpture, so the adolescent “other universities are taking down statues; we’re putting one up” rhetoric is phony, posturing nonsense and a blunt jab a the “political correctness” that takes actual and genuine offense at pro-slavery propaganda on college campuses. And this sculpture is a fairly problematic one to boot, appearing to lump in at least one kidnapped African slave (so far as one can tell from this photo–the noticeably emaciated and only half-naked figure to the left) as if slaves were just some other immigrants, i.e. people escaping injustice and… Read more »

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Sculpture? Even fancier.

Anonymous
19 days ago

“McCarrick Report: American Catholics urge ‘truth and transparency’”; 10 Nov 2020 Theodore McCarrick had long-standing ties to Catholic University, first as a student, assistant chaplain, Dean of Students, and an administrator and fundraiser at the university between 1958 and 1965.  He later served on the university’s Board of Trustees and as chancellor of the school while he was Archbishop of Washington from 2000 until 2006. The university bestowed an honorary degree on him in 2006. When the Archdiocese of New York announced in 2018 a credible accusation of child sexual abuse had been made against McCarrick, “the news hit our… Read more »

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Catholic church administration has been abusive and corrupted . The history proves it, and I am afraid that such aspect is perceived as its nature.

My years long experience in CU also proves that CU administration is abusive and corrupted.

Anonymous
20 days ago

This looks like a pretty bright feather in the cap of a CUA nursing alum: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/stanford-childrens-health-names-new-chief-nursing-officer-301169070.html

Anonymous
20 days ago

FYI – CUA President Garvey’s Comment on Just Released Report on Theodore McCarrick

All –

Given all that CUA is dealing with these days, the McCarrick scandal is just more disappointing news

I’m not a Garvey fan but I think that his comments about the McCarrick scandal are quite thoughtful.

https://communications.catholic.edu/news/2020/11/mccarrick-report.html

Keep the faith and press on.

There may soon be a Covid-19 vaccination in our future.

Anonymous
20 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Well, if the New York Times is not going to ask what you think (going instead to someone at Notre Dame), there’s always your own web site.

Anonymous
20 days ago

What are your thoughts on the letter from SGA to faculty & professors?

The Tower published an article about the response, some controversy inside the Senate too.

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Plain and simple, CUA needs to return to in person instruction or there will be no CUA. It was a $20 million hit to not have the students return for the fall semester. The university can not afford to take such a financial hit again. If the faculty somehow prevent the university from opening in person this spring it will be the quintessential pyrrhic victory.

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The faculty did not “prevent” the University from allowing all students to return to campus in the fall. That decision came from John Garvey. If you think that the faculty will be able to prevent it this time around (even if they want to prevent it), then you imagine us to have far more power than we do! In fact, I believe that plenty of faculty are willing to go and teach in person or hybrid format. It would be nice, however, to know the latest updates about any additional measures the University is taking to make it safe to… Read more »

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Maybe the loss of an institution this weak wouldn’t be much of a loss in the scheme of things.

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The faculty aren’t preventing anything: the pandemic is preventing an awful lot. CUA’s goal right now is to allow as many students as possible (under the terms of the precautions adopted by the university) to move back into the dorms, and to allow as many classes as possible (same terms) to meet at least partially in person. There are going to be plenty of students and faculty who can’t be part of those efforts for reasons with which we are all familiar. Even if every single faculty member was able to teach 100% in person, many courses couldn’t meet that… Read more »

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The fact “[h]igher ed in general is hemorrhaging money right now” doesn’t mean that all the bleeders will survive.

Anonymous
19 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I find the letter itself lacking in nuance out of what feels more like innocence than selfishness. I do, however, worry about the confidence it expresses in common features of ‘sanitization theater’ (practiced far and wide beyond CUA, not just on our campus). It doesn’t matter how much anyone fine-tunes the environment of public buildings if people then go and hang out in one another’s dorm rooms. I just hope they understand and act upon that difference.

Anonymous
20 days ago

“Why does this particular sort of abuse and neglect keep happening in the Catholic Church specifically?” The right question, asked in this NYT column published today: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/10/opinion/theodore-mccarrick-investigation.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage Note that the academic authority quoted is from Notre Dame. Nothing from anyone at “The” CUA.

Anonymous
20 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Remember in 2018 when CU hosted the former Polish Minister of Defense, Antoni Macierewicz, former editor of an anti-semitic newspaper, who was at one point in his career forced under media pressure to recant his support for the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, who later became a leader of the anti-immigrant right wing in the Law and Justice party, which criminalized any claim among Polish citizens that some Poles were complicit in the Holocaust? (Among other lovely attributes one could name.) Well, at least he was ardently pro-life! That’s what matters! Anticipating some controversy when some of these facts… Read more »

Anonymous
20 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The answer to the question, I think, lies in the Church’s obsession with human sexual impulse — with manipulating, repressing, and stigmatizing it. You just don’t see this abuse problem, in anything like the magnitude that it afflicts the Catholic Church, in Christian denominations that aren’t so tortured by sexuality. In the case of the Catholic Church, I hypothesize that the obsession with sex has always been about power: Sexual desire is among the most fundamental human cravings, as basic as the need to eat and breath. If you can tame in someone a desire and need that strong, you… Read more »

Anonymous
20 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

And to complete the thought about the Church’s obsession with sex — you can’t use shame and fear to try to suppress normal human sexual behavior without severely deforming the psyches of some of your subjects. That’s what happened to any number of priests, who are themselves victims of the Church’s unnatural preoccupation with sex.

Anonymous
21 days ago
Anonymous
20 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

President-elect Joe Biden may be a pro-choice Catholic but he is also pro-life for immigrants, poor people, children left at the border, people who depend on the Affordable Heathcare Act, the LBGJT community, the Black Lives Matter community and the poor – all real breathing people that the Catholic Church should support as well. I wish that I was as sincere a Roman Catholic as is Joe Biden. How in God’s name can Roman Catholics support lame-duck president Trump who supports none of these people? I feel abandoned by the Catholic Church and by my alma mater, CUA which has… Read more »

Anonymous
20 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

A lot of the Catholic Trump voters–and surely there were many among the CU “community”–who don’t believe Biden was legitimately elected, are the same ones who don’t believe Francis is the real Pope. Go figure.

Anonymous
21 days ago

A November 6th e-mail from Chris Lydon to campus leadership reports: early action/early decision down 16% vs. previous year. Overall applications to date down 15%. Regular decision applications (which is admittedly early so the percentage is a little miss leading) down 40%. Someone needs to ask the administration what the financial impact will be of another freshman class coming in 10% below an already low base of this year? Has this potential impact already been worked into the current salary reductions? Or were they assuming a return to a somewhat “normal” size class?

Anonymous
21 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

10% below this year is optimistic

Anonymous
22 days ago

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has issued a gracious statement congratulating President-Elect Biden and noting that he becomes the nation’s second Catholic President. https://www.usccb.org/news/2020/president-us-bishops-conference-issues-statement-2020-presidential-election

Anonymous
22 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Given his pro-choice position, Biden would not even be permitted to speak at CUA, assuming he were willing to.

Anonymous
21 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

But President-elect Biden could speak at Notre Dame, Georgetown and Villanova and our students, faculty and staff could watch his speech on TV.

What does that say about THE Catholic University of America?

Anonymous
21 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

It suggests the name is a tragic joke.

Anonymous
23 days ago

The second Catholic president ever has just been elected. Does “The” Catholic University of America have any relevance to this moment? Doesn’t feel like it.

Anonymous
24 days ago

“The colleges with virtually no coronavirus cases”; 5 Nov 2020

Timely article from National Geographic with some good lessons for CUA.

I hope that CUA’s administrative leadership will read it.

See https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/2020/11/the-colleges-with-no-coronavirus/

Anonymous
25 days ago

All – 

I thought that you might find this report to be of interest as you consider the monetary value of a degree from CUA.

I would think that prospective students and their parents would find it to be useful.

See – “A First Try at ROI: Ranking 4,500 Colleges”

https://cew.georgetown.edu/cew-reports/CollegeROI/

Anonymous
28 days ago

From The Tower 4 days ago (https://tinyurl.com/y4x3xyyv): [Question to Garvey at the Sept. 30 Town Hall for the class of 2021]: “Will students who are not allowed on campus next semester— or unable to return due to the virus— receive another tuition decrease?  Garvey answered, “We’re determined that people are going to be allowed on campus this spring, so that’s a question we don’t want to face.” There’s John Garvey leadership in a nutshell: whistling in the dark. Maybe add “glibly” to that: “How can we trust that you are going to open in-person classes and buildings, since you said… Read more »

Anonymous
28 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The “I’m resolute” evasion doesn’t have an element of sloganeering, and I say that as someone who believes Garvey may be the last best hope of this enterprise.

Anonymous
27 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

You certainly have a right to your opinion, but I pray that President Garvey is not the “last best hope of this enterprise”.

I strongly believe that our faculty, staff and concerned alumni represent our best hope that CUA will survive.

Anonymous
27 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

If you’re talking about the “survival” of a 130-year-old university, it’s already too late. Too many competitors are in far stronger positions, even as they may be experiencing temporary challenges. Struggling to “survive” means you’ll never catch up.

Anonymous
23 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Keep the faith.

I am confident that CUA will somehow survive.

My main concern is what kind of a university will CUA be post-Covid.

Anonymous
28 days ago

FYI – “A wave election? Or a fundamental realigning of American politics?”; 11.01.20

A very insightful article written by CUA’s John Kenneth White, Ordinary Professor of Politics. 

See https://thehill.com/opinion/campaign/523856-a-wave-election-or-a-fundamental-realigning-of-american-politics

A Moderate Alum
29 days ago

I find it very troubling that Leonard Leo is a member of the CUA Board of Trustees.

But it helps explain what has been happening to CUA under the Garvey Administration.

Read this 1 Nov 2020, NBC News story and decide for yourself.

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2020-election/these-attorneys-remade-supreme-court-now-they-re-fighting-limit-n1245469

Anonymous
29 days ago

If it wasn’t Leo, it would be somebody with the same politics, just someone less prominent and connected. His prestige is an asset, even if his values are distressing.

A Moderate Alum
28 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I’m sorry but having people on the CUA BOT whose values are distressing trumps (no pun intended) prestige every time.

Anonymous
28 days ago

Not if you care about filling freshman classes.

Anonymous
28 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

You hit the nail on the head. CUA has lowered its acceptance criteria to the point that it will accept anyone who can breathe and pay some fraction of its advertised tuition costs. Such applicants could care less about the “prestige” of the BOT members – regardless of the board member’s held values. In the meantime, under the current administration, CUA will keep marching forward to right-wing academic irrelevance. As someone who has known CUA since the 1950’s, it makes me sad to watch a once excellent and diverse university end up being basically known for its unaccredited Busch Business… Read more »

Anonymous
27 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

If you are a faculty member, the second sentence of your post conveys so much contempt for your students that it’s a wonder why anyone would even bother applying for admission.

Anonymous
26 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I’m sorry for your confusion.

I certainly don’t have contempt for CUA’s students or applicants.

I simply stated that applicants to CUA do not make their decisions based on the “prestige” of the BOT members.

Anonymous
28 days ago

Leo despises democracy. It’s interesting the “CUA” has rebranded to “CU” or the faux-trendy and soon-to-be-stale “CatholicU” in the last year or so. On one level, it’s going back to what the university was always called locally. On another level, it’s muting the notion that there’s anything “American” in the ethos of the university. Increasingly, there isn’t.

Anonymous
28 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I think it’s the “The” that their giving up on.

Anonymous
28 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

What evidence is there that Leo is anti-democratic?

Anonymous
27 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Maybe this article will help.

FYI – “Senate Democrats Seek Records on Leonard Leo’s Trump Work”; 5 May 2020

https://news.bloomberglaw.com/us-law-week/senate-democrats-seek-records-on-leonard-leos-work-for-trump

Anonymous
27 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

This article does nothing to substantiate the ugly charge that Leo “despises democracy”. It simply suggests what we all know — that he’s worked hard, within the democratic process, to further the appointment of conservative judges. You don’t seriously doubt that liberal lawyers do the same thing, do you? As one example, there is Lawrence Tribe’s famous (leaked) letter to Pres. Obama promoting Kagan for SCOTUS and dissing Sotomayor. See: https://www.abajournal.com/news/article/laurence_tribes_leaked_memo_sotomayor_not_as_smart_as_she_seems_to_think_sh
The fact that you may prefer Tribe’s political values over Leo’s does not make either of their efforts to influence judicial appointments anti-democratic.

Anonymous
25 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I think that all the “dark money” PAC’s are an affront to true democracy – regardless of their political persuasion.

Ergo, I consider them all to be anti-democracy.

And Leonard Leo and the Koch Foundation crowd are particularly egregious in this matter.

Moreover, both Leo and associates of the Koch Foundation have a strong influence on CUA’s BOT.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Maybe CUA needs to invest in establishing a political poll. That seems to get some public recognition for several obscure colleges during election cycles. And it would fit into CUA’s politics department.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I assume that you are jesting.

Clearly, “investing” in anything is not something that CUA’s professional administrators should be considering right now.

I hope that CUA’s crack team of administrators is focused on spending whatever they need to do to help CUA stay alive during this current critical time.

If we can survive in the near term, then we can discuss investment strategies for the future.

Like opening a satellite campus in Alexandria, VA….:)

Anonymous
29 days ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Depends on how much it would cost and whether donor money could be raised to make it happen. Several lesser-known schools that sponsor polls receive a lot of public recognition during national elections. Name recognition is one of the factors that can help enrollment efforts.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Why is it that we only have until Nov 6th to decide when to start the deductions? Does this give us enough time to talk to our financial advisors or legal consultants? It seems like that should be more of a rolling deadline depending on when you want your 18 months to start.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

My take on this is that it is an arbitrary deadline that the university has set up. As with everything else, everything is an emergency and every deadline is “hot.” There probably needs to be some time in order to code up everyone’s payroll deductions and get it entered into Cardinal Station. For faculty, I would say it is better to make the right decision, fully understand the legal ramifications and obtain assurances that we are not signing up for a “1st round” of multiple rounds of cuts. As we have seen these austerity measures have nearly doubled since the… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Why would you start early on something that has no guarantee of finishing?

Anonymous
1 month ago

Does the Faculty Assembly have advice to the faculty about whether we should voluntarily take the pay cut now or wait? It seems like whatever the Faculty do, we should speak with one voice. The communication from the Provost’s office does not make a case for taking the pay cut now and it is hard to see what benefit would arise to an individual faculty member for taking it now. The two factors weighing in favor of taking it now are solidarity with the staff forced to take a pay cut now and helping the university get through the crisis.… Read more »

Admin
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

We advise all faculty to get legal advice before agreeing to a change in pay, and the FA is in the process of retaining a law firm for that purpose. We believe that if the faculty responds collectively, we have the best chances for securing outcomes beneficial to faculty, staff, and the entire university community. For now, we would ask that you encourage your colleagues to contribute to the legal representation fund so that we can move forward as quickly as possible. Just in the last 24 hrs, there has been tremendous support for this effort. A link to the… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago

Trying to Buy Excellence The recent discussions about the unaccredited Busch School having not covered itself in academic glory since it was created in 2013, fail to account for an ironic fact. According to CUA’s Development Office, the “Light the Way” giving campaign has now achieved $325.6M of its $400M goal. The Busch Business School leads the way by receiving donations totaling $75.8M. The only other school with total donations near that number is the nationally renown and accredited Conway Nursing School which has received $66.1M Clearly, academic excellence is not a criterion used by the donors to the Busch… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

You don’t improve in higher ed without money. So there is reason to believe Busch is headed in the right direction.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I got the fact that the Bush Business School has received a lot of money.

But could you please describe the direction that you think the Busch Business School is heading?

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Not sure I understand the question. What “directional” choices do you think are available?

Anonymous
1 month ago

The Busch School’s web site includes this page, which addresses, sort of, the accreditation issue as the very last item. The brief statement on accreditation is virtually unintelligible: https://business.catholic.edu/admission/parents/index.html And the link it provides says nothing more on the subject.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The Busch School’s website is actually quite unimpressive and lacking in any real quantitative material.

It’s full of blah-blah marketing fodder.

As an example, in March 2019, CUA announced that they had appointed Carly Fiorina as “Distinguished Clinical Professor in Leadership”.

That certainly sounds like an impressive title, but there is no evidence that she has ever taught a class at CUA.

I would be very surprised if the Busch School of Business is ever accredited.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

“Unimpressive” rather understates it. Just read through the FAQ for parents. It’s like a parody of bad business writing, larded with guff and not a few basic grammatical problems. Who wrote such schlock? What does it say about the school’s academic standards? And here’s a conspicuously missing item from the FAQ: ”Why doesn’t the Busch School have a department of economics?”

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The Busch School is a long way off from AACSB accreditation. Take a look at the faculty list they have no where near enough of the required PhD’s in each academic area. It appears one of their finance faculty does not even have a Masters (which I thought was against CUA’s current policy?) Faculty with business doctorates are very expensive, it would take an investment of several million a year over a decade to have a faculty that could secure AACSB accreditation. Given CUA’s overall financial position, I just do not see such an investment happening anytime soon.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I question whether AACSB accreditation makes much of a difference for the type of programs Busch offers. My understanding is that it was given “school” status based on the popularity of business as an undergraduate major — even without accreditation and before the Maloney overhaul. A lot of the undergrads seem to be concentrated in accounting, and you don’t need AACSB accreditation to provide the foundational coursework leading to the CPA exam. A lot of other undergrads seem to be focused on “sales” and “marketing” studies for entry-level jobs that depend at least as much on personality and work ethic… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago

“The Catholic Church in the United States is for sale.” And this definitely includes CUA.

For those members of the CUA Family who are concerned about what has been happening to CUA over the past decade or so, this year old article and its extensive list of focused references are well worth re-reading.

See https://www.ncronline.org/news/accountability/editorial-money-shapes-us-catholic-narrative

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The Church itself may still be up for bid, but CUA is bought and paid for.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

With CUA in the grip of men like these, perhaps it would be better if the school just continued to wither and eventually faded away. There are plenty of other, better Catholic colleges not dependent on extreme right-wing profiteers.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Per this map (https://tinyurl.com/yyt8nmr2) in today’s NYT, CU is “winning” the DC-area university COVID race, with more cases (207) than Georgetown (164), George Mason (98); George Washington (60), American (30), Marymount (23), Howard (20); Gallaudet (1). OK, University of Maryland has 775 cases, but then the enrollment there is 40,743, so the UMD case rate is 1.9% to CU’s whopping 3.59%. So statistically, we’re not just winning, we’re crushing it. Any talk of returning to campus in the spring is utterly irresponsible. cases enrol* CU 207 5771 3.59% UMD 775 40743 1.90% Georgetown 164 19593 0.84% Marymount 23 3363 0.68%… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Anonymous
Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

It’s really outrageous and unacceptable.

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Sick and Tired Staffer
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

As a staff member and CUA parent, I’m honestly so glad that the faculty has seemingly made the decision not to teach on campus this semester. It’s about time that the amount of lazy, self-righteous, and insubordinate faculty members is reduced as a result. The best way to save money is to have the administration realize that some of our schools and some of our faculty aren’t actually needed, because they don’t bring anything to the institution but grief, self-serving myopia, and a lack of reality. In “Academic Renewal” that everyone loves to bring up, it was the staff that… Read more »

Admin
1 month ago

[Note from FA moderators] We realize that some lines in this comment may be construed as personal attacks on faculty. On the other hand, we felt it was very important to accept and post this comment, with some hope that it will generate discussion around the issue of faculty-staff solidarity.

Anonymous
1 month ago

The OP on this thread, as a staff member, already knows about the kinds of things I say here, so I think I am responding in the interest of keeping the conversation going. I see three subjects raised here that are all worth attention. Faculty-staff solidarity (as the moderators pointed out). This one is by far the most important. Research productivity Online education #1: I agree that faculty-staff solidarity is in desperate need of improvement, and above the person-to-person level. I would like to know how we can collaborate more effectively and in what areas the faculty may be able… Read more »

Sick and Tired Staffer
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I thank the moderators for thinking it “important” to have my thoughts included in the discussion board. I have been following the thoughts of the FA members throughout the pandemic, and I was cautious not to include personal identifiers in my comments, but the fact that the moderators even paused to post my comments for fear of personal attack against the faculty proves my point. There is no solidarity between the faculty and the staff at this university. In fact, I believe the exact opposite. Many of my colleagues and I are going to have our paychecks cut by 4%… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago

As a staff member, I second the sentiment that the staff feel no solidarity with faculty. I have been reading the comments here for a while and I often see negative comments about various non-academic departments or offices, often calling the staff of these offices and departments ineffective, terrible at their jobs, etc. I can assure these comments have left staff very defensive and untrusting of faculty.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Thanks to the staff member for posting this important comment. The question is raised often at FA meetings about how to include staff and whether the FA can expand to include. Unfortunately, the FA bylaws specifically state that we are a “faculty” assembly. Should the staff develop a staff assembly, I think there are many things that can be done together, as well as including the GSA (grad students) and SGA (undergrads). Staff may have the opportunity to unionize whereas the NLRB limits the rights of faculty at private, religious institutions to do so. As the FA has learned in… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

This is a great link to the NYT. Thanks for sharing. It is interesting that we have the highest number of infections while having one of the lower enrollments of the DC area schools. An this large # infections is without even surveillance testing of the CUA community (students, faculty and staff). Surveillance testing is only happening in the athletes, a subset of the campus population. Imagine if we doubled or tripled the testing (only 120 tests conducted from 10/16-22). Not a comprehensive testing plan. The good news is we only have 1 active case in the past week… just… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

These numbers are alarming. Rates of asymptomatic cases are likely significantly higher as surveillance testing appears to be very limited. Does anyone know how many athletes are being tested and how often?

Anonymous
1 month ago

What do you think/how do you feel about the spring semester? Do you think it would be best to continue online-only education? If the decision is made to return to campus, will you teach in person or work from home?

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I liked my profession – heck, I liked my life – before the pandemic. I want it back. But I am not teaching in person until I am vaccinated and ideally many of my students are as well.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Oh look–a dark money outfit with no website, no employees, and no office brought in $80 million in its first year. The group’s sole trustee? Hint: he’s on our board.

https://www.citizensforethics.org/reports-investigations/crew-investigations/80-million-dark-money-group-tied-to-trump-supreme-court-advisor-leonard-leo/

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Great post – thanks for finding and distributing this article.

It begs a few questions about the slippery slope that CUA has been descending under President Garvey’s ultra-conservative administration.

(1) Rather than cutting faculty salaries, maybe Garvey could ask his bud, Leonard to send some of his “dark money” to CUA to help us weather the COVID-19 storm.

(2) Maybe CUA’s Busch Business School will offer some courses in how to attract and leverage “dark money”.

Anonymous
1 month ago

One of the things that I think about and wonder about–and that I think the faculty are equipped to help with–is this: —-> What is CUA’s identity? Not its mission (that’s a written statement), not its affiliation with the bishops or the Vatican (that’s its charter and its status). Those things don’t really let us describe ourselves effectively to outsiders in general or to prospective students in particular. —-> What is CUA as a distinctive community? How would we describe ourselves as being somehow different from other schools of our general size, shape, rank, demographic, Catholic-ness, location? What is worth… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Proximity to downtown D.C. and the non-urban, verdant campus make for a distinctive combination that you don’t see a lot. I’ve always wondered why the architecture school didn’t shine more, since it doesn’t seem to have any close-by competitors.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

You’ve put your finger on a serious problem. The “Catholic Identity” obsession–which is basically a self-contradiction in that you can’t be kath-holikos (“through-the-whole,” sometimes badly rendered as “universal”) and then fixate on identity–has sucked all the oxygen out of the room when it comes to answering a question like this. Any answer(s) we give will always be drowned out by that drumbeat.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Even before Garvey arrived, his predecessor O’Connell and what was then a bishop-dominated Board made a strategic decision: the only way to compete with the myriad other Catholic colleges and universities in the U.S. was to stake out a claim that CUA was somehow the “most Catholic” of them all. There wasn’t much basis for the claim except a bunch of dead clerics’ bad bet on the founding of the school in the 19th Century and the whoop-dee-doo fact that on three occasions in 130 years a pope briefly visited the campus. But Garvey committed to the strategy as part… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

One of many problems with this proposition is that it is so one-note. Not only does it appeal to a very narrow demographic, but it also runs the risk of creating an echo chamber instead of a university.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

It’s also placing the university in an impossible position at this time in history when there is a developing schism between a progressively inclined pope and a far-right wing of the Church that happens to be over-represented on the university’s board.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The serious, even dangerous problem with “We’re ‘most Catholic,'” or “authentically Catholic,” or “faithfully Catholic”–pick your formulation– is that it always posits some other people (lesser Catholics, inauthentic Catholics, faithless Catholics, cafeteria Catholic) that CU is over and against. It smugly says “We’re better than you.” Nothing could be less Christian. It’s bad enough from a crude marketing perspective that this puts off a lot of people who sincerely try to live their Christian faith; just as bad, it attracts some Catholics of the most troubled kind–those who think they are better than others because of their adherence to their… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago

In my opinion, CUA President Garvey put himself and the CUA family at risk by attending the Rose garden event for Judge Amy Barrett.

Garvey’s comment that, “All in all, he was glad to go to the event, proud to support a former student and family friend.” is a clear demonstration of his blatant hypocrisy.

“Do as I say, not as I do”.

http://cuatower.com/2020/10/president-garvey-attends-rose-garden-event/

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

It makes you wonder if Garvey is part of the “People of Praise” cult. Anyone who can be happy about this cynical, hypocritical nomination and confirmation scheme, a naked power grab putting party over country, has donned some hefty moral blinders. But that’s evident enough in Garvey’s claimed befuddlement regarding the partisan divide over mask-wearing. If you really don’t understand that, you haven’t been doing the reading.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Wonderful response!!!

Let us pray that Garvey submits his resignation so that he “can spend more time with his family”

And maybe he can then join one of Leonard Leo’s dark money-sponsored political organizations

Anonymous
1 month ago

Good catch to the poster who commented on the professionalism of CUA’s auditors. Likely CUA uses them because they are “affordable” and good enough. But I was more concerned with the fact that CUA’s total sponsored research for the year ending on April 30, 2020, amounted to a paltry $28,541,000 Methinks that if CUA is serious about wanting to be considered a research institution, it needs to invest a lot more to help its faculty win more R&D proposals rather than cutting the faculty’s salaries and retirement contributions. Hello – Compare the size of CUA’s Office of Sponsored Programs and… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

“if CUA is serious about wanting to be considered a research institution,”
Does anyone still believe CU is loyal to that essential element of its mission?

Anonymous
1 month ago

“Divided reactions in US as pope backs same-sex civil unions” – ABC News; 21 Oct 2020 LGBTQ Catholics and their allies in the U.S. welcomed Pope Francis’ endorsement of same-sex civil unions, the first time he’s done so as pontiff. But some prominent members including a bishop said Wednesday that he was blatantly contradicting church teaching. And back here at CUA, The Rev. Donald Paul Sullins, a conservative sociology professor at the Catholic University of America, said that the Pope’s statement “directly contradicts the Catholic Church’s most recent teaching on this matter.” Let’s see what CUA President Garvey or any of… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I thought what the Pope says IS “the Church’s teaching”.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Yes, it will indeed be interesting to see if Garvey draws on the expertise of Fr. Sullins, whose research on parenting by gay couples (which, of course, argues that it’s harmful to children) has been shown to be massively tendentious and methodologically flawed. Here’s a passage from a notable amicus brief filed in Obergefell by the American Psychological Association, the American Medical Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the National Association of Social Workers, and ten or so other prominent scholarly and professional organizations that recognize shoddy research when they see it: [fn48] Recently published papers… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago

I have always thought that CUA’s administration and BOT merely gave lip service to their support of Pope Francis.

How CUA and the ultra-conservative members of the BOT (e.g. EWTN, Leonard Leo, and most of the bishops on the BOT) respond to the Pope’s recent endorsement of civil union laws for same-sex couples will be very telling and it could have a major impact on potential donors and potential new students.

See https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/21/world/europe/pope-francis-same-sex-civil-unions.html

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

As noted in another post recently, Tim Busch’s Napa Institute and the Busch School just co-sponsored a two-day program whose featured speakers included Paul Singer, a hedge fund manager who prominently supports gay rights. So I doubt the Pope’s new position will cause much angst among the BOT.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Not holding my breath for Tim Busch or David Koch to pressure John “We’re not going to have a gay dating service here” Garvey to fully allow and recognize an LGBT student group.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Remember, too, that David Koch, consistent with his libertarian outlook, has supported gay rights.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Just an FYI the Universities 2020 audited financial statements have been released. I have posted the link below for anyone who wants to look at them.

https://controller.catholic.edu/about/2020-the-catholic-university-of-america-and-subsidiaries-fs.pdf

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Do you trust an auditor that doesn’t proofread its report? “Subsequent to April 30, 2020, the University sold a revisionary interest in a parcel of land located adjacent to the contiguous campus property with a related building construed thereon for a sales price of approximately $4,500,000.” Note 16, p. 34. (it’s a “reversionary interest, not “revisionary”; and buildings are “constructed” on property, not “construed”) 

Loyal Alum
1 month ago

Question for Today’s CUA Faculty I’m a crusty old CUA alum who has many fond memories of my days at CUA. I give my CUA experiences (good and bad) considerable credit for the successes that I was able to achieve in later life – but none more important than the fact that I met my wife while we were both CUA students. I still maintain contact with many of my CUA classmates from the 1960’s and I have tried to be a regular contributor to CUA’s annual funding campaigns and to provide volunteer support to various CUA departments. The other… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Loyal Alum

I am struggling through this exact question for my child this year. From an education standpoint, I have full confidence in my colleagues that the quality of the education is strong and rigorous. I have less confidence that the institution will be around 50 yrs from now due to lack of strong, strategic leadership.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Loyal Alum

So glad you asked this question. I am a CUA faculty and currently send my child to the school. I have younger children and absolutely would and plan on sending them to CUA. I am one of the biggest critics of the current administration and would agree with most of the negative comments on this discussion board. Here is the paradox of CUA: inept administration yet outstanding faculty and dare I say world-class level undergraduate instruction. I would endorse every single undergraduate program with the exception of the Business School. The Business School is not bad, but compared to our… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Encouraging words.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I am also a faculty member with teenage children. I would send them to CUA in a heartbeat as I think the undergraduate education they will receive is academically very strong. This does not mean I am not seriously concerned about the current direction of the administration, which I do not support.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The question remains whether the larger world will appreciate and reward that education. There’s a reason why parents pay hundreds of thousands of dollars and risk criminal prosecution to get their kids into certain other schools.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Loyal Alum

As a faculty member, I could have sent my children to CU tuition-free. And I would have been fine with them doing so–if they wanted to–knowing that they could still have obtained an excellent education, at least in some areas. All of them looked at the place–they went to Odyssey Day and the rest of it–and all took a hard pass. My oldest is gay, and the anti-gay history of the Garvey administration was all too off-putting. Understandably. CU is definitely not a good place for LGBT kids, and probably not for their siblings, or for young people who have… Read more »

Loyal Alum
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Thank you for your very enlightening and candid posting.

Your children must be very proud of you for not forcing them to attend CUA just because of the free tuition they would receive.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Loyal Alum

Thank you for the kind reply. I would also add that after attending top-notch Catholic high schools in this area–with great facilities, fantastic programs, and very diverse student bodies (another thing sorely lacking at CU)–they were quite underwhelmed by CU. Their high schools also exposed them to and taught a much healthier and true-to-the-Gospel kind of Catholicism than what you see at CU today, which leans on the insider-ism of “authentically Catholic” and the triumphalism of “We’re the ones who have it right.”

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The run-down real estate is the legacy of decades of financial neglect and mismanagement which Garvey has undertaken to remedy with a restructured board and his fundraising efforts, but there is a lot of ground to be made up. The hostility to gay students is institutionally suicidal, but there’s no sign Garvey is giving any ground on this issue.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Loyal Alum

It depends on the discipline the kid wanted to study.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

And that variable applies to virtually any college under consideration.

Anonymous
1 month ago

In response to the poster who essentially asked, “What can be done to save CUA from what appears to be its current spiral to irrelevance?” – let me offer a few suggestions. For starters, I think that CUA needs to end its quest of becoming an ultra-conservative Catholic university and return to its moderate roots. I think that selling CUA’s soul to the Koch Foundation, EWTN, Leonard Leo’s buds and their ilk is fool’s gold. Whay would CUA want to abandon all of its moderate supporters? And CUA needs to end its business strategy of advertising tuition costs that are… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

But the “moderate” approach — predating the embrace of Koch and the Federalist Society and all the rest — did not produce a prestigious institution whose doors were being knocked down by top students begging for admission. That formula didn’t work unless you count mediocrity as working.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Why should our goal be to become a highly prestigious educational institution for elite students? It seems to me that what America desperately needs is better education for the non-elites. We can from our current political climate how dangerous an inadequately educated society can bc. I would think it would be more consistent with our mission and history to seek to provide an excellent education to the marginalized, the poor, the vuknerable in society. How can we do this and be financially viable in a pandemic? That is the challenge.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

In higher education, as in most things, prestige is a consequence of excellence. That’s why.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Did Trinity College lose prestige when they reinvented themselves to serve minority women? Was St. Katharine Drexel looking for prestige when she founded Xavier University to serve Black students? You do not lose prestige by deciding to serve a particular market, as long as you serve that market with excellence. It is just too expensive and there are not enough students in the market place for CUA’s strategy to be based on becoming an academically selective university.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Trinity is hardly a resume builder. Xavier is no Morehouse and Morehouse is no Yale. If the issue is not enough kids with money, all the more reason to salute Garvey for having the insight that advancement needs to be built up. But aiming low is a pretty sad ambition.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Can we please stop talking about identifying the need to increase the amount of philanthropy at an institution as some sort incredible insight. Is there a private university President in the entire country who does not know going into their role that raising money is one of their top priorities? If President Garvey needed to “discover” this need as an insight that is pretty sad. The question is how has he executed on the need? Has he hired a decent advancement leadership team? Are they raising money that meets the strategic needs of the university? Has the President chosen a… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

One reason Advancement has received a lot of mention here is that a number of posters have chosen to take shots at the Advancenent operation. As for the “insight” point, in fact it seems that Garvey is the first CUA President to realize and act on the need for a robust professional advancement effort. You might recall that Pellegrino quit after just four years in the job, on the eve of a capital campaign, because he said he didn’t like to spend so much time raising money. O’Connell lacked the talent, the imagination, or both for it; he seemed to… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Speaking of Trinity, wouldn’t it make sense for both schools if CUA acquired it?

Anonymous
1 month ago

There’s an interesting article in today’s Inside Higher Education that highlights how Marymount has been able to maintain enrollment during the coronavirus pandemic. https://narratives.insidehighered.com/enrollment-strong-during-pandemic/index.html

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Be carful, this is “sponsored” content, which means it is essentially an ad purchased by Marymount. Most recent data from their own web site: 91% acceptance rate, 52% graduation rate and undergraduate freshman class down 7% since 2016. PR stunts are not going to save small catholic colleges from the impending demographic plunge.

Loyal Alum
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

It is true that Marymount wrote the actual article and paid to have it published by “Inside Higher Education”. I applaud Marymount’s approach and in fact I found the article to be very well-written Maybe CUA should write an analogous article about all the great things that it is doing and pay to get it published. Hello, Development and Admissions Offices, anyone home? Alternatively, generate a first-class article and then send it to CUA’s alumni distribution list and ask that it be forwarded to potential students and their parents. If I were to receive such a copy, I will certainly… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Loyal Alum

Wait a second – the second post in this thread indicates that the information in the Marymount paid ad is factually inaccurate in light of information on the school’s web site. If so, I don’t think we should encourage false advertising.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

I agree with you – CUA should always tell the truth.

Anonymous
1 month ago

Thanks to the Anonymous poster for sharing the complete WSJ article regarding the observation that parents are quite prepared to treat tuition as they would a car’s price: something to haggle over It was very enlightening. Look, I get the fact that CUA is being forced to play the current college admissions game. Nonetheless, it’s sad to think of CUA pricing its “product” like Walmart or Target would do and offering “discounts” on previously unsubstantiated and inflated prices. I have worked in the commercial business space for a long time and offering a product with questionable perceived value at clearly… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Ah, experience in the “commercial business space,” as distinct from the non-commercial business space. So, tell us what you think CUA’s management should be doing differently to fill those classrooms. From a commercial business standpoint, that is.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

[Edited] CUA’s current administration has been trying to operate like a “business” for some time. My point is that their attempt to do so has failed and to continue down this road is pure folly. It has failed for two principal reasons: (1) The administrators and the current BOT are not businessmen who have a keen understanding of the higher education marketplace and what is required to succeed in it; and (2) Their current business model, focused on becoming an ultra-conservative Catholic university, is fundamentally flawed as it has alienated a large percentage of potential customers and supporters. A new… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

That response says what you think they’ve done wrong, but it doesn’t say what you think should be done.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

We are told by the current VP of Admissions at CUA, the “marketing” admissions challenge for CUA is that fewer and fewer high school seniors are interested in an authentically Catholic college/university. He has said so publicly often and produced an expensive report from the Arts and Science group that basically says CUA is too Catholic. This flies in the face of a long list of colleges (Christendom, Thomas Aquinas, Franciscan of Steubenville, U. of Dallas, Ave Maria, University of Mary in North Dakota, Belmont Abbey College and Benedictine) that seem to have figured out how to be overtly Catholic… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

The schools in your “long list” of “overtly Catholic” colleges are decidedly obscure institutions that offer prospective students none of the prestige that, like it or not, carries such great weight in career success. All of them are even more on the fringe than CUA, which is unknown to many people outside the D.C. area. So I don’t think your list provides much of a guidepost. To compete for students successfully, a college needs money. Money for improved facilities; money to hire marquee faculty; and, most important of all, money for financial aid to win over the smarter kids who… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Go ahead and call these colleges “obscure” and not prestigious. I think both Belmont Abbey and Steubenville have alumni as current members of Congress and U. of Dallas just hired a President from the prestigious Baylor Honors program. I will none the less concede your point that they are not as prestigious as other institutions. So President Garvey’s strategy is for CUA to become elite or prestigious? I guess I was just naïve to think it was about advancing the mission of the Church. Villanova, Georgetown, Holy Cross etc were able to become more selective as the post War baby… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

You don’t make a difference for the Church or for anybody else by settling for mediocrity.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

CUA was here during the same post-war baby boom. Somehow these other Catholic schools made good use of the boom to build national brands and widespread, persistent alumni loyalty. Why didn’t/couldn’t CUA do the same?

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Historically weak leadership is the short answer. Other hypothesis include: not having division one sports, overemphasis on graduate programs during the critical time they needed to build the undergraduate program, I also wonder how the DC riots of the late 60’s effected enrollment and of course the infamous Curran affair. All that said, I think they basically rested on their laurels while the students came more easily, essentially they were content on being the number one number two choice for undergraduates.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

All the other reasons you give, including complacency, are subsumed by the first: historically weak leadership. So going back to the good old days doesn’t seem to be the answer. Garvey is a strong leader who is determined to be a change agent. Change can be scary or disturbing to those who would prefer, in your words, to rest on their laurels. I say get with the new program or get out of the way.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Carefully and soundly reasoned argumentation used to be a thing those at Catholic universities taught, practiced, and cherished. Why are the defensive Garveysts so lousy at it? Apples and oranges–none on this “long” list is a serious research university, and none are serious peer institutions in the enrollment space. Now, if we aspire to be a small, undergraduate, ultra-conservative, small-tent Catholic liberal arts college, we’re well on the way–just completely rewrite our Mission–although likely we’ll be beaten out for students by the kind of niche colleges listed above. Maybe sell half of the campus for cash and to tamp down… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Obviously the original poster thought his or her list of “niche” colleges (an apt term, I’ll agree) was relevant to CUA’s situation, and maybe there’s a reason for that. Faulty premises are a hallmark of weak reasoning, and the premise that CUA is “a serious research university” is delusional. Maybe it was once, but it lost its place in the AAU – well before Garvey’s arrival – and has otherwise steadily lost ground as measured by external research dollars relative to competitors and by public recognition. The recent, constant invocations of the word “research” in university marketing communications are the… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Do remember “Cultivating Catholic Minds?” The whole Catholic mind approach was within the last few years and that wasn’t exactly a winning strategy either.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Yes, and many senior faculty on the focus group (including yours truly) warned the President and the admin what an absolutely terrible idea it was—culturally tone deaf and willfully blind to market realities. But as ever, the President disregarded faculty advice and decided instead to please himself, the bishops, the Opus Deists, the neo-schismatics, and right-wing donors. The campaign launched, enrollment predictably tanked, and the whole idea was squirreled away to a few less visible parts of the website. Untold heaps of money wasted, and another glaring example of utterly feckless leadership.

Anonymous
1 month ago

CUA’s enrollment struggles feature prominently in today’s WSJ piece, which includes this: “Christopher Lydon , vice president for enrollment management and marketing at Catholic University, said 20% to 30% more families than last year are appealing for bigger tuition discounts. The school refunded existing students for room and board this spring and has offered nearly $500,000 more in discounts to this fall’s incoming freshmen compared with last year’s freshman class.” Full article: https://www.wsj.com/articles/how-to-get-a-big-break-on-the-cost-of-college-just-ask-11593440265?mod=searchresults&page=1&pos=10

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

This article is from 30 June 20 and it is behind a paywall. Can you copy the entire article and post it for us?

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

oops, you’re right – it was from back then.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

How to Get a Big Break on the Cost of College: Just AskThe pandemic has accelerated a yearslong shift in financial power toward families, away from schools By Josh Mitchell Updated June 29, 2020 1:02 pm ET The coronavirus pandemic has accelerated a yearslong shift in bargaining power away from colleges and toward families, which are quite prepared to treat tuition as they would a car’s price: something to haggle over. When a college accepted Frances Marcel’s second child several years ago, she pleaded for a discount. It wouldn’t budge, she said, so she dipped deeper into her savings. After her third child… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

This article reiterates what every reasonably well-informed person knows: CUA’s enrollment difficulties are shared by hundreds of other colleges outside the ranks of the elite institutions. To that extent, they are not specific to CUA’s current administration.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

In place of glib and “reasonably informed” assurances in defense of the administration (the leaders of which have long blamed CU’s troubles on the economic weather), let’s try some actual reasoning. In a general but quite trivial sense, it is the case that many non-elite colleges are in bad straits right now, and “to that extent” our enrollment difficulties are not specific to CUA’s current administration. But precisely “to that extent,” this responsibility-shirking argument is worthless–and worse, deceptive. The poster might want to study a bit of basic propositional logic, not to mention ethics. This is like saying, “There’s a… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

On the contrary, Garvey has taken bold action to meet the challenges, specifically by engineering the restructuring of the Board of Trustees to include more lay persons with means, connections and worldly expertise, and by investing in long-neglected institutional advancement capability. Both strategies have undeniably led to significantly increased philanthropy. He came to a school that was already flailing and mired in mediocrity; have any faculty ever taken any responsibility for that state of affairs?

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

It’s also available in Mullen library with copyright clearance. The direct link is http://proxycu.wrlc.org/login?url=https://www-proquest-com.proxycu.wrlc.org/docview/2430675573?accountid=9940

Anonymous
1 month ago

Is there any substance to this new institute – i.e., any money behind it? Or is it just smoke and mirrors? https://communications.catholic.edu/news/2020/10/latin-american-iberian.html

Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

“Why don’t we get together and call ourselves an institute?” — Paul Simon, ‘Gumboots’ (Graceland).

CUA Alum with Grandchildren
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Seriously – another “institute”???? I am a CUA alum with several grandchildren who are in the process of applying to college. I am very glad that I attended CUA and I have been a loyal donor in appreciation for what I gained from attending CUA in the 1960’s. But now I am very very concerned about recommending today’s CUA to my grandchildren – especially since I will be supporting their attendance. In my opinion, CUA desperately needs more tuition-paying exceptional students, more sponsored research and a robust, fairly-compensated faculty. Given that, I am profoundly disappointed that CUA would decide to… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago

Unless there are some significant new resources devoted to this heralded “institute,” it’s window dressing. Substantial initiatives are usually funded by a naming donor; I don’t see anything like that here.

Anonymous
1 month ago
Anonymous
1 month ago
Reply to  Anonymous

Also a lesson in what happens when upper administration is allowed to reward itself lavishly despite mediocre performance and lack of development success: “In recent weeks, faculty and staff have been in revolt over the implementation of cuts that seem to distribute the burdens of austerity unevenly. When Sanjay Reddy, an economics professor at the university, analyzed compensation data, he found that management salaries had increased by 45 percent between 2014 and 2019. During that same period, revenue increased only 17 percent.” See the first couple of comments in the article about the McKinsey-fication of the University. Lots of comparisons… Read more »

Anonymous
1 month ago

Here’s some background in case you ever wondered what CUA Trustee Leonard Leo does when he’s not “helping” President Garvey transform CUA into a super-conservative religious university.

Snapshot of Secret Funding of Amicus Briefs Tied to Leonard Leo–Federalist Society Leader, Promoter of Amy Barrett —8 Oct 2020

https://truenorthresearch.org/2020/10/snapshot-of-secret-funding-of-amicus-briefs-tied-to-leonard-leo-federalist-society-leader-promoter-amy-coney-barrett/

Anonymous
1 month ago

FYI – “College and University Presidents Respond to COVID-19: 2020 Fall Term Survey”; October 08, 2020

https://www.acenet.edu/Research-Insights/Pages/Senior-Leaders/College-and-University-Presidents-Respond-to-COVID-19-2020-Fall-Term.aspx