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Face Value The Brilliance Adaptability and Tenacity of Higher Education Introduction A brief statement of the approach of the book and of


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									                                       Face Value;
               The Brilliance, Adaptability and Tenacity of Higher Education

Introduction: A brief statement of the approach of the book, and of my goals and objectives.

Face Values: A summary of the values that suffuse the academy, regardless of academic

Face Off: A physical assault on me by a subordinate dramatically and humorously exposes
several dynamic principles of the academy.

Faculty‟s Intact: My inability to deliver the right answer (“Yes”) on my first day of my first
administrative job teaches me how to manage bad news with the faculty.

Face-to-Face: I gained insight from a fellow manager this past year who said wistfully, “We
have to find some way to make „one-to-many‟ support feel like „one-to-one.‟” This essay
explores support for academics, how recent reductions in state aid and other factors have
strained that support and why faculty insist on face-to-face communication.

In Your Face: There is a significant proportion of the faculty whose approach to
administrators can only be characterized by the current slang phrase, “In Your Face.” I
speculate about the reasons for their attitudes, the mixed success that they enjoy and why
they can never be happy.

Facing Up: Hierarchy persists in the University both subtly and obviously. As an
administrator, I generally feel I am “facing up” to the faculty, accountable, subordinate, but
increasingly less servile.

Facing Down: I have on rare occasions been acknowledged to be right by a faculty member.
I analyze a small number of humorous examples to isolate the fragile power of the
administrator to do the right thing.

Losing Face/Saving Face: I was once formally charged with discrimination on a hiring
decision by an individual who was not even a candidate for the job. This is one of the most
puzzling experiences of my career. More puzzling still was that this same individual who
was formally charging me with discrimination was at the same time telling me to my face
that I had “saved his life.” This essay explores a key concept of losing and saving face in the

Feed Your Face: When I was much younger, I used to amaze my colleagues by eating all
day long and not gaining weight. At my current middle age, my appetite in this and many
other ways is much gentler, while the consequences of over-indulgence are somewhat more
obvious. This essay segues from the vagaries of my impulses to the importance of food and
focused conversation in the academy, where the best boss I ever had kept an invariable daily
lunch with his principle colleague.
Suck Face: In the movie, On Golden Pond, the teen-age grandson of Henry Fonda‟s
character tries to shock him by referring to his romantic encounters with his girlfriend as
“sucking face.” Fonda effectively portrays a bemused, tolerant wisdom in his response.
This essay tries to isolate the true loves of the academy and the fresh, sometimes shocking
ways that academics profess them.

About Face: Many writers believe that the University is undergoing a dramatic change and
that its very existence is threatened. Certainly it is being rigorously scrutinized by the public
and by our politicians. Some even argue that the values of the academy are being
reversed—given an “about face.” These essays analyze both the strains on both those
“face”values and the institution of higher education itself, I will speculate about the future
of the university and attempt to allay the fears of those who feel at the end of history.

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