Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Dr. Adjunct Gets an Admisery Email.

The following is an email which I received today regarding a current course. Part of the university rules require instructors to post attendance into a second system for access by the adminicritters.


Dear Dr. Adjunct,

I noticed that you marked Nonattending Snowflake as attending class
yesterday. However, she had told us that she would not be able to attend
classes this term and she has not attended any classes since the term
began. Nonattending Snowflake is being charged a "no show" rate until
she is withdrawn (while failing) automatically from the system.

Dubious Dean


Now, seriously, what university in the world (other than this one) would prefer to keep a student enrolled when the student has said that she would not be attending (to administratium and not her instructors, mind you)? I can't think of a reason why other than the green shit which leaks from the United Socialist States of America government in the form of "student loans."


  1. The green shit is the answer, my friend.

  2. It's either that or the bleeding heart faction. Once a certain date passes, the uni gets to keep the aid AND the student doesn't have to pay it back. By now that money is long gone on rent, food, baby formula, cell phone bills, car payments, or whatever else she wanted to spend it on. Some of my colleagues actually believe education is in the business of financing people's lives, not just their schooling and directly related expenses. Plus if she bought books she can sell them back and get more money.

  3. Wait... did you make a mistake and mark her as present or did she actually show up?

  4. This isn't socialism, Admin, this is another case of the "phantom soldier." A phantom soldier is either a real or fake person whose name is used to pad the rolls. In South Vietnam certain Army of the Republic of Vietnam paymaster/sergents would create soldiers for their units just to collect "their" pay; on paper the unit was fully staffed, in reality it was understrength by 10 to 30 percent.

    This is a scam, and it needs to stop NOW.

  5. Strelnikov nailed it, I think. Something is very, very fishy, you're in possession of a smoking gun (yes, the mixed metaphors are piling up here), and you need to figure out to whom you can turn over the evidence without getting hurt. I'd make a hard and/or PDF copy of the correspondence (whatever you think you can get away with without leaving a trail; sounds like a high-surveillance environment, so, though I'm pretty tech-illiterate, I'd guess that forwarding to a non-university account if you don't already have that set up would be a bad idea). Then I'd look into whom you could most appropriately share this with, and into state and federal whistleblower protections. For any school, the accreditation board would seem to be a possibility, as would federal student loan authorities (because yes, that's almost certainly what's going on here). For a state-(somewhat)-supported school, there's also likely a state governing body of some sort.

    If none of the above seem to apply, there's always your friendly local (or not-so-local) investigative reporter (at least one person each at the Chronicle and Inside Higher Ed are undoubtedly already assigned to the student-loan-fraud "beat").

    At the very least, if your university has an ombudsperson, talk to him/her.


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