(And Other Potential External Influence on University Curriculum)

Selected Background Information

- Gary H. Jones, Associate Professor, College of Business, Western Carolina University





UNC, University Code

502 D. Relation of the Chancellor to the Constituent Institution.

(2) ...The chancellor shall be responsible for ensuring that there exists in the institution a faculty council or senate, a majority of whose members are elected by and from the members of the faculty.  The general faculty, however, which shall include at least all full-time faculty and appropriate administrators, may function as the council or senate.  The faculty shall be served by a chair elected either by the general faculty or by the council or senate.  However, the chancellor may attend and preside over all meetings of the council or senate.  The council or senate may advise the chancellor on any matters pertaining to the institution that are of interest and concern to the faculty.  In addition to ensuring the establishment of a council or senate, the chancellor shall ensure the establishment of appropriate procedures within the institution to provide members of the faculty the means to give advice with respect to questions of academic policy and institutional governance, with particular emphasis upon matters of curriculum, degree requirements, instructional standards, and grading criteria.  The procedures for giving advice may be through the council or senate, standing or special committees or other consultative means.  [emphasis added]


See also, UNC CODE:

Section 600. Freedom and Responsibility in the University Community

Section 601.  Academic Freedom and Responsibility of Faculty

Reference:   http://www.northcarolina.edu/content.php/legal/policymanual/uncpolicymanual_100_1.htm



Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS)

Commission on Colleges

Principles of Accreditation, Foundations for Quality Enhancement (2008)


3.4.10  The institution places primary responsibility for the content, quality, and effectiveness of the curriculum with its faculty (Responsibility for curriculum)

3.4.11 For each major in a degree program, the institution assigns responsibility for program coordination, as well as for curriculum development and review, to persons academically qualified in the field. In those degree programs for which the institution does not identify a major, this requirement applies to a curricular area or concentration. (Academic program coordination)



See also,

1.1 (Principle of integrity)

3.2.4 (External influence [Governing Board])

3.7.4  (Academic freedom)

3.7.5 (Faculty role in governance)

Reference:  http://www.sacscoc.org/principles.asp













On Gifts Affecting the Curriculum

Table of Contents [This Page—and note UNC Code, above]


Guidelines on Gifts Affecting The Curriculum [UNC CH]

Examples of Agreements

Faculty Essays / Analysis    

News Articles Related to Gifts with Curricular Implications

News Articles Indirectly Related to this Topic:

Selected References

Ayn Rand – Institutes

BB&T, Links

Pope Center Contribution Controversy

Academic Freedom


The Privatization of Public Universities  [2000, UC Berkeley, excerpt]

Michigan State External Review of UC Berkeley  [2004, excerpt]

[Cornell] Faculty Statement Of Principles & Best Practices  [2005, excerpt]

Classes for Sale?  [2008, Editorial, Charlotte Observer]

Report of the AAMC Task Force on Industry Funding of Medical Education  [AAMC, 2008]

UNC Faculty Assembly Resolution on Potential External Influence of University Curriculum  [May 2008]

Eisenhower Farewell Address  [1961, excerpt]




















Exemplar Policy (UNC Chapel Hill, Office of the Provost)

[Under “Miscellaneous”]



















Appalachian State, Letter from Chancellor to Senate Chair (PDF)

UNC Charlotte, University Letter to BB&T (PDF)

UNC Charlotte, BB&T Letter of Agreement to UNCC (PDF)

Western Carolina University agreement with BB&T (forthcoming)

WCU Email from Provost and Chancellor to Faculty re BB&T Gift (PDF)


UNC Chapel Hill (Nov. 2002)

BB&T Charitable Foundation makes million-dollar gift to philosophy

[Not a copy of the agreement, but a news release with quotes from the agreement]












FACULTY ESSAYS (Permission to post was granted)

Gifts Affecting the Curriculum; BB&T


Issue Analysis by Gregory Starrett, Associate Professor, Dept. of Anthropology, UNC Charlotte

Issue Analysis by Daryl Hale, Associate Professor, Dept. of Philosophy and Religion, Western Carolina University

Response to Prof. Hale by Prof. Stephen Miller, Economics, College of Business, Western Carolina University (PDF)

Response to Prof. Miller by Prof. Hale (PDF)



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Ayn Rand Studies on Campus, Courtesy of BB&T

by Clark Davis


Morning Edition, May 6, 2008 · John Allison, CEO of banking giant BB&T, calls Ayn Rand's novel Atlas Shrugged "the best defense of capitalism ever written." He says that Rand changed his life, and he's working to ensure that the deceased author isn't left out of the nation's college curricula.

Since 2005, the BB&T Charitable Foundation has given 25 colleges and universities several million dollars to start programs devoted to the study of Rand's books and economic philosophy. In January, the company announced it was donating $1 million to Marshall University in West Virginia.

The money would establish a course dedicated to Rand's Atlas Shrugged and Adam Smith's The Wealth of Nations, and help create the BB&T Center for the Advancement of American Capitalism on campus.

But not everyone at the university is excited by the gift. Rick Wilson, a sociology instructor at Marshall and head of the West Virginia Economic Justice Project, says that Rand's philosophy, objectivism, is based on the view that selfishness is the only moral value.

"[Objectivism] goes against the collective wisdom of the human race, I think, pretty much everywhere," says Wilson. "I think it's a curious interpretation of philanthropy to use corporate money to promote, really, an extreme philosophy."   [more]


Inside Highe Ed
April 28, 2008

Quick Takes: Med Schools Urged to Limit Industry Ties

Academic medical centers should bar professors, students and employees from accepting gifts — including equipment and services — from companies or industry groups, a special task force of the Association of American Medical Colleges recommended in a report released Sunday. The association’s Executive Council will consider the report in June. If the rules are adopted, they would likely be influential, although the AAMC does not control its members. The report follows years of growing concern over possible conflicts of interest created by industry support for medical education.


Who is John Galt?

Paul Krugman

Krugman Blog, New York Times

April 12, 2008

“And why is a book about him being assigned in university courses?

Because businesses are paying schools to teach the wisdom…

[Referencing, and in apparently in response to, the Bloomberg News story below]



CEOs pushing Ayn Rand studies use money to overcome resistance

April 11 (Bloomberg)

  - By Matthew Keenan

“Ayn Rand's novels of headstrong entrepreneurs' battles against convention enjoy a devoted following in business circles. While academia has failed to embrace Rand, calling her philosophy simplistic, schools have agreed to teach her works in exchange for a donation.

“The charitable arm of BB&T Corp., a banking company, pledged $1 million




BB&T gifts with Ayn Rand requirements draw criticisms at schools

The News & Observer (Charlotte)

April 6, 2008


“…But on at least 17 of those campuses, including UNC Charlotte, N.C. State and Johnson C. Smith University, the gifts come with an unusual stipulation: Rand's novel, "Atlas Shrugged," is included in a course as required reading.

The schools' agreements have drawn criticism from some faculty, who say it compromises academic integrity. In higher education, the power to decide course content is supposed to rest with professors, not donors. Debate about the gifts, which arose at UNCC in March, illustrates tensions that exist over corporate influence on college campuses…”




Donor gave, and UNCC winced

Charlotte N&O (2008-03-23)

As a college student in Chapel Hill, John Allison stumbled across a collection of essays by Ayn Rand and was hooked by her philosophy of self-interest and limited government. As he rose over the decades to chief executive of BB&T, one of the country's leading regional banks, Rand remained his muse.

He's trying to replicate that encounter through the charitable arm of his Winston-Salem-based company, which since 1999 has awarded more than $28 million to 27...

[Available via ‘Archive News Search’]





Buying a spot on the syllabus

Inside Higher Ed

Feb. 27, 2008

— Scott Jaschik

“…Their concern, they said, is a university accepting a gift that requires any book to be taught — when book selection should be a faculty prerogative. “Atlas Shrugged can be taught. It’s the required part that is problematic,” said Jamie Warner, director of undergraduate studies in political science.

“…Ken Spenner, a sociology professor who directs the program, said that Duke “would absolutely reject” any requirement that a particular book or idea be taught or not taught. In light of the concerns about BB&T proposed gifts elsewhere, Spenner said that Duke officials thoroughly reviewed the agreements to assure that there were no such requirements anywhere, and they found none.




‘Fundamentally Inconsistent’ With University Values’

Inside Higher Ed

Nov. 07, 2007

— Scott Jaschik

Organizers of the Academy on Capitalism and Limited Government Fund hoped to turn their new program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign into a Hoover Institution of the Midwest, a model for getting more free market ideals and ideological diversity into major research universities

But when a faculty committee was able to get all the details of the agreement that created the new center, it found provisions that were “fundamentally inconsistent” with university values that are designed to ensure a diversity of views. Specifically, the panel found that portions of the agreement would have restricted funds to research designed to reflect certain points of view, and that donors were given control over matters traditionally left to academics.

The faculty panel — which was appointed by the chancellor — said it was “deeply troublesome” that the agreement to accept the center was made without faculty consultation and that many details were kept secret until recently. The panel called for Chancellor Richard Herman to renegotiate the deal for the academy and on Tuesday, a spokeswoman confirmed that he had pledged to do so.




Pamplin College receives $1 million gift for program on capitalism and freedom

By Sookhan Ho


BLACKSBURG, Va., October 23, 2007 -- Virginia Tech's Pamplin College of Business has received a $1 million gift from BBandT Charitable Foundation to establish a teaching program in the college's finance department that explores the foundations of capitalism and freedom.

The program comprises new undergraduate and graduate courses as well as the BB&T Distinguished Lecture Series on Capitalism that will be inaugurated on Wednesday, Oct. 24, by BB&T Chairman and CEO John A. Allison.




Advocates of objectivism make new inroads

Chronicle (7/13/2007)


“It is not every day that a foundation offers to pour tens of thousands of dollars into a humanities department at a small regional institution. But this past spring, the philosophy department at the San Marcos campus of Texas State University received such an offer — and turned it down.    The invitation came from the Anthem Foundation for Objectivist Scholarship, a California-based organization that promotes the ideas of the late Ayn Rand, whose much-loved and much-loathed novel Atlas Shrugged will mark its 50th anniversary in October…

 “…Skeptical members of the Texas State philosophy department believed that the Anthem Foundation was trying to buy a spot in the philosophical canon for Rand.

[Subscription required]




Ayn Rand’s Academic Legacy

Chronicle (7/13/2007)


This week in Telluride, Colo., hundreds of people will gather for the Ayn Rand Institute's annual conference. The event will include a field trip to the mountain town of Ouray, which is believed to have been the inspiration for Galt's Gulch, the hidden enclave for free-market advocates in Rand's quasi-apocalyptic 1957 novel, Atlas Shrugged.

At the end of Atlas Shrugged, as John Galt and his comrades emerge from their mountain hideaway, Galt declares, "The road is cleared. ... We are going back to the world." But it is not at all certain that the new tribe of objectivists will find a clear road into mainstream academe.

[Subscription required]




'Train Your Mind to Change the World'

A new institution, born out of the individualistic philosophy of Ayn Rand, has gone its own way

From the issue dated July 13, 2007


[on Founders College]

The campus, tucked away on a former tobacco plantation near the Virginia-North Carolina border, is the brainchild of Gary L. Hull, a longtime visiting professor of sociology at Duke University and a proponent of Rand's philosophy, objectivism.

Scheduled to open in the fall, it won't be the average liberal-arts college. For one thing, it will be for-profit. And in exchange for forgoing tenure, faculty members will receive a financial interest in the company that runs the college.

This fall the ghosts may outnumber the students. So far, just 10 have enrolled.




Plan for new college draws scrutiny

Inside Higher Ed

June 06, 2006




BB&T Gift to Enable UNCG Students to Study, Debate Philosophy of Capitalism (2006-11-02)


By Jill Yesko, University Relations

Contact (336) 334-3890

Posted 11-2-06

Greensboro, NC- A $1 million gift from the BB&T Charitable Foundation to the Bryan School of Business and Economics at UNCG will strengthen students’ understanding of the moral foundations of our economic system.

The gift will establish the BB&T Program in Capitalism, Markets and Morality. The program will offer undergraduate and graduate students from disciplines across UNCG the opportunity to examine the ethical and philosophical basis for free market economies.




Meredith College faculty reject BB&T money

Concerns about ethics course


12 APR 2006  •  by Bob Geary

The faculty at Meredith College in Raleigh struck a blow for academic freedom Friday, and in so doing, might've cost the college $420,000 from the BB&T Charitable Foundation. At issue: A grant from BB&T--$60,000 a year for seven years--for an honors program featuring, apparently at the bank's insistence, such right-wing texts as Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged and Frederick Hayek's The Road to Serfdom.

The faculty's position: We can't allow donors' money to dictate what we teach. The vote was 54-34.


Gifts & Curriculum, BB&T and Meredith College, Raleigh, NC

Meredith College resists curricular requirements associated with BB&T gift (TIMELINE)


April 4, 2006:  [Meredith] Academic Council approved the course along with a resolution (reading in part):
“that the faculty teaching this course … are free to design the course with no pre-conditions.  Faculty teaching the course must have
the freedom to choose appropriate readings and other course materials within the guidelines of academic freedom and academic
responsibility.  Further be it resolved that any funding obtained for the College that includes conditions that the Faculty interpret to be
restrictions on academic freedom cannot be used to support the development and implementation of this course or any course.”



$2 million gift to George Mason U, Mercatus Center (2006-07-06)


A portion of the funds will create two chaired faculty positions at the Mercatus Center and within the Economics Department at George Mason University, dedicated toward the study and teaching of the moral foundations of capitalism.




WJU Receives Private Gift from BB&T  (2006-02-01)


Wheeling Jesuit University (WJU) today announced the receipt of a $700,000 gift from the BB&T Charitable Foundation­-one of the largest gifts in the University’s history.

Award of the unrestricted funding, which the University will use to enhance the university’s business curriculum – especially the teaching of free-market capitalism – was announced by Brent Robinson, BB&T regional president for northern West Virginia, during a morning ceremony on the Wheeling campus.


WJU Institute Examines Capitalism and Promotes Examination of a Free Society





BB&T gift to UNC Charlotte (2005-08-25)

UNCC Public Relations

BB&T donates $1 million to UNC Charlotte

Gift will create programs focused on moral foundations of capitalism

“The contribution is payable over five years and will be used to support the development of a course on ethics and morals in capitalism for advanced business undergraduates and MBA students. Lilly will be the first instructor for the course, which will be offered as a business elective in the spring 2006 semester. Additionally, the gift will fund faculty research on the philosophical underpinnings of capitalism; create a speakers series focusing on ethical and core values in business; support the Center for Applied Ethics at UNC Charlotte; and establish an Ayn Rand reading room on campus.




Business gets $1 million to study ethics of capitalism  (2004-03-25)

University of South Carolina, Daily Gamecock, by Michael LaForgia

Issue date: 3/25/04 Section: News

“In light of recent corporate scandals, USC's Moore School of Business received $1 million from BB&T Wednesday to set up a faculty position to teach and research the moral foundations of capitalism…

According to Allison, Ayn Rand's unique ability to depict the purity of capitalism is the reason a new course will be devoted to her book.




$150,000 to Guilford College (2002-12-30)

Unrestricted gift




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When Strings Are Attached, Quirky Gifts Can Limit Universities



Faculty are liberal, who cares

Inside Higher Ed

(Little to no evidence of student “indoctrination”)



Where pharma meets college

News Observer

Academic drug discovery centers offer ex-execs a new niche



Scientists May Have Put Their Names on Papers Written by Drug Companies
Lila Guterman
The Chronicle of Higher Education
April 25, 2008

Academic scientists appear to have put their names on papers that are actually ghostwritten by for-profit companies and then published in medical journals, a new study indicates. Some of the scientists accused of doing so deny any wrongdoing, but journal editors are already outlining measures to prevent future breaches of academic integrity.

In the April 16 issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association, four scientists published the results of a search of court documents. The documents are about to the anti-inflammatory drug Vioxx, which has been withdrawn from the market and has been the subject of hundreds of lawsuits because of concerns about its safety.

The search revealed mentions of many articles that were published under academic researchers' names but appear to have been written by others. Those others worked for Merck & Company, which is the developer of Vioxx, or for medical-publishing companies.

In an editorial accompanying the article, Catherine D. DeAngelis and Phil B. Fontanarosa, editor in chief and executive deputy editor of JAMA, respectively, call researchers' guest authorship "unprofessional and demeaning to the medical profession and to scientific research." [more]




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[to be reworked for format]


Academic Capitalism and the New Economy: Markets, State, and Higher Education by Sheila Slaughter and
Gary Rhoades (Hardcover - Aug 17, 2004)


Ayn Rand's Normative Ethics: The Virtuous Egoist by Tara Smith (Cambridge University Press, 2006).


Busch, Lawrence, Richard Allison, Craig Harris, Alan Rudy, Bradley T. Shaw, Toby Ten Eyck, Dawn Coppin, Jason Konefal, Christopher Oliver, with James Fairweather (2004). External Review of the Collaborative Research Agreement between Novartis Agricultural Discovery Institute, Inc. and The Regents of the University of California. East Lansing, MI: Institute for Food and Agricultural Standards, Michigan State University.



Cornell Faculty Statement of Principles and Best Practices Concerning Corporate Strategic Alliances (CSA)



David C. Montgomery, A Kelvin Smith Professor of Physics, Dartmouth College, Marketing Science,

Marketing Ourselves. Academe, Sept/Oct 2003.         


Eyal Press and Jennifer Washburn, The Kept University, The Atlantic Monthly, March 2000.


Remaking The American University: Market-smart And Mission-centered by Robert Zemsky, Gregory R. Wegner,
and William F. Massy (Hardcover - Aug 25, 2005)


Robert Rosenzweig, President Emeritus, Amer.Assoc. Universities, What’s For Sale These Days in Higher Education? U.Cal. Berkley Center For Studies in Higher Ed, Oct.26, 1999.           


Universities in the Marketplace: The Commercialization of Higher Education by Derek Bok (Paperback - Nov 15, 2004)


University, Inc.: The Corporate Corruption of American Higher Education by Jennifer Washburn (Paperback - Aug 17, 2006)

Excerpts from University, Inc. (Washburn): 10 Things You Should Know About Corporate Corruption on Campus



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AYN RAND – INSTITUTES [Several in disagreement with each other]

AR Institute






Anthem Foundation for Objectivist Scholarship



Second Renaissance, Inc.



Atlas Society (Objectivist, but has some philosophical disagreements with AR Institute; see Chronicle article, 7/13/07, ‘New Inroads’)



Journal of Ayn Rand Studies (also on the outs with AR Institute, according to Chronicle 7/13/07 article [‘New Inroads’])



The death of the Daily Objectivist (and many other Ayn Rand related Websites)


Whatever Happened To…?

[According to the author of this page, of 15 Websites related to Ayn Rand and ‘Objectivism’ (that he has tracked) over the past number of years, 10 no longer exist (including one that “has not been updated in years”).  Of 7 email lists, 6 are defunct, and 1 no longer hosts discussions.]



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About BB&T

“BB&T Corporation is the nation's 12th largest financial holding company with $121.7 billion in assets.  Based in Winston-Salem, N.C., BB&T and its subsidiaries offer full-service commercial, retail banking, and additional financial services such as insurance, investments, retail brokerage, mortgage, corporate finance, consumer finance, payment services, international banking, leasing and trust. BB&T has the second largest market share in Virginia, and operates about 200 financial centers in the D.C. metro and Northern Virginia area. It operates more than 1,470 financial centers throughout its footprint in the Southeast and mid-Atlantic states.


About BB&T Chairman and CEO John A. Allison, IV (from Answers.com)



BB&T Core Values; ethics



About BB&T



BB&T Gift of $1 million to UNC CH Philosophy (No specific curricular requirements)





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POPE CENTER Contribution Controversy

Summary Controversy, Pope Center, UNC Chapel Hill


Donations & Curriculum Development Guidelines, 2006

(See also, UNC-CH Link to “Guidelines on Gifts Affecting the Curriculum” above)


Pope Center perspective:




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UNC FA Resolutions on Academic Freedom (Below)

(Primarily concerned with political influence, but economic influence also referenced)

Defend academic freedom against politically motivated legislation (11/04/2002)


Support academic freedom (9/02/2002)



AAUP on Academic Freedom (including links to the 1940 Statement of Principles)

Academics for Academic Freedom (UK)

Academic Freedom at WCU Summary Statement (With Reference to SACS)

American Library Association (Links to Academic Freedom Resources)

Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS)

WCU Faculty Senate Resolution on Academic Freedom, 2002 (PDF)

Wikipedia article on Academic Freedom



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The Privatization of Public Universities [Excerpt]

Erfurt University

Erfurt, Germany

May 23, 2000


By Robert M. Berdahl


University of California, Berkeley

“First, there is the danger to which Clark Kerr alluded nearly four decades ago, and about which Professor Hollinger has written recently. And that is the loss of common ground, common unity, common purpose within the university. This has already been severely tested by the specialization within the modern research university and it has only intensified as the "two cultures" to which C.P. Snow referred have grown apart. But the university-industrial complex brings market forces into the university to an extent never before contemplated...

Second, with the large market differentials, and the new capacity for some faculty -- biologists, engineers, computer scientists, and business school faculty -- to earn substantial amounts outside the university, there can be corresponding devaluation of the work of humanists and social scientists. …When the new president-elect of Stanford, John Hennessy, an engineer, was first interviewed… He [stated] that his greatest challenge was to convince Silicon Valley's wealthy contributors to Stanford that the humanities were vital to the well being of Stanford.

And third, the university-industrial partnership, productive as it is, lucrative and essential as it is for much of the basic research of the university, can undermine the belief in the basic objectivity of the research of our faculty… [There is a danger] that the perception of the objectivity of our faculty may be compromised and with it the confidence that their research is dedicated to the public good.

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Michigan State External Review of UC Berkeley Collaborative Research Agreement

Busch, Lawrence, Richard Allison, Craig Harris, Alan Rudy, Bradley T. Shaw, Toby Ten Eyck, Dawn Coppin, Jason Konefal, Christopher Oliver, with James Fairweather (2004). External Review of the Collaborative Research Agreement between Novartis Agricultural Discovery Institute, Inc. and The Regents of the University of California. East Lansing, MI: Institute for Food and Agricultural Standards, Michigan State University.



“A central principle – perhaps the central principle – of universities is creativity. Universities can only be successful as organizations to the extent that they foster and cherish creativity among their faculty, students, and staff. Creativity can be nurtured by encouraging freedom of inquiry, but it cannot be created by bureaucratic means. Little evidence suggests that reward systems for scholarly inquiry actually promote an increase in the quality of scholarship (although such systems can certainly be used to reward those who succeed).

The reverse is not true, however. Creativity can be thwarted by bureaucratic means. (p. 16)


“Without substantial autonomy, scholarly work is likely to fail to achieve its objectives. It becomes subject to the political whims of the moment; critical issues are ignored or papered over. But autonomy does not come easily. Throughout the history of American universities, there have been those who have wished to reduce the autonomy of the academic enterprise. (p. 17)


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[Cornell] Faculty Statement Of Principles & Best Practices Concerning Strategic Corporate Alliances (SCAs)

Cornell Faculty

Spring 2005


“In any event, there is broad Faculty agreement that SCAs must be carefully managed at all stages: negotiation, initial implementation, ongoing oversight, post-hoc assessment and, if warranted, policy and practice modification Attention to the principles and practices of this Statement will help ensure that Cornell retains its academic integrity as it enters into these new collaborations. Particularly important are the recommendations concerning monitoring and evaluation of the SCA experience. Some academic institutions have apparently done SCAs well; others have had well-publicized problems.11 But there are extraordinarily few reliable data and rigorous assessments of the actual impact of SCAs on research quality and academic culture. Ensuring that such data are being collected and such assessments are occurring here will go a long way towards alleviating Faculty concerns.





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Classes for sale?


Charlotte Observer editorial

Tuesday, Apr 1, 2008

Posted on Sun, Mar. 30, 2008


A public university's faculty and administration -- not donors -- should have the final say on the content of courses. Otherwise, the college classroom becomes just another a arena of commerce, not a place where independent learning and research take place. That's wrong.


That's why the University of North Carolina system ought to enact a clear policy that forbids universities to seek or accept private funds that come with strings about what will be taught to students. This is an important principle, one that affects each of the 16 campuses.


The issue has come up at UNC Charlotte, where a $1 million gift pledge in 2005 from the bank BB&T came with a stipulation that the book "Atlas Shrugged" by Ayn Rand be included in a course as required reading.


On the surface, that seems harmless. Ms. Rand's philosophy of Objectivism, which says individuals have the right to live entirely for their own self interest, is a sound starting point for debate and learning in courses in business, economics, literature or philosophy.


This issue isn't about Ms. Rand's philosophy, or whether her works should be taught in college. It's about letting -- or appearing to let -- a donor prescribe a university's course content.


Chancellor Phil Dubois, who was not at UNCC when the deal was sealed, is not happy with the arrangement. His discomfort is well-placed. Yet UNCC is not the only state university in North Carolina with such agreements. Others include N.C. State, Appalachian, UNC Greensboro, UNC Pembroke and UNC Wilmington.


That's why an across-the-board policy for the UNC system is needed. 

Devising one deserves immediate consideration by President Erskine Bowles and the Board of Governors.


The deal could arise in either of two ways. The potential donor could demand it, or the university could promise it to entice the potential donor to give. Either way, it's wrong to strike fund-raising deals that suggest a university's curriculum can be shaped by the highest bidder.





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Report of the AAMC Task Force on Industry Funding of Medical Education [AAMC, 2008]

"An effective and principled partnership between academic medical centers and
various health industries is critical in order to realize fully the benefits of
biomedical research and ensure continued advances in the prevention, diagnosis,
and treatment of disease. Appropriate management of this partnership by both
academic medical centers and industry is crucial to ensure that it remains
principled, thereby sustaining public trust in the proposition that both partners
are fundamentally dedicated to the welfare of patients and the improvement of
public health.

"Over recent decades, medical schools and teaching hospitals have become
increasingly dependent on industry support of their core educational missions.
This reliance raises concerns because such support, including gifts, can influence
the objectivity and integrity of academic teaching, learning, and practice, thereby
calling into question the commitment of academia and industry together to
promote the public’s interest by fostering the most cost-effective, evidence-based
medical care possible. [Exec Summary]




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Resolution on Potential External Influence of University Curriculum

UNC Faculty Assembly



Whereas the principle of integrity is essential to fundamental precepts of academic freedom and shared governance in American higher education, and


Whereas this principle of integrity is declared by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) as “essential to the purpose of higher education” and that “failure of an institution to adhere to the integrity principle may result in a loss of accreditation or candidacy” [SACS, 2008, 1.1, in the context of self-reporting], and


Whereas academic freedom in higher education, specifically described by the AAUP 1940 Statement of Principles, is generally recognized by a wide range of governing boards, accrediting bodies, university policy statements, and faculty governance councils, and


Whereas these established principles of academic freedom include the prerogative of faculty and faculty curriculum committees to determine academic curricula and select curricular materials free from influence exerted by external entities, and


Whereas the University of North Carolina accrediting body, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, specifically declares that “The institution places primary responsibility for the content, quality, and effectiveness of the curriculum with its faculty” [3.4.10; 2008], and


Whereas in the University of North Carolina this prerogative is recognized by the University Code, which states in part that “…the chancellor shall ensure the establishment of appropriate procedures within the institution to provide members of the faculty the means to give advice with respect to questions of academic policy and institutional governance, with particular emphasis upon matters of curriculum…” [502D], and


Whereas, to be meaningful, such procedures must be formalized as part of an institution’s decision-making structure and must ensure that faculty are involved in any process related to proposed curricular change as early as possible, and that faculty consensus around such proposed changes be incorporated except in the most unusual of circumstances as determined according to The UNC Code, and


Whereas UNC Chapel Hill, one of the most prestigious public universities in the country, has adopted a published set of guidelines and recommendations that embody many of the considerations above, and


Whereas in recent years a number of UNC campuses have engaged in negotiations and concluded agreements with external entities that resulted in curricular changes through various processes that essentially ignored many of the principles stated above,


Be it resolved that, by whatever process deemed most efficient, the UNC Faculty Assembly approach representatives of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and work with UNC General Administration Academic Affairs, and other relevant UNC divisions to establish a set of guidelines for the UNC system constituent campuses that shall be adhered to in any case where—regardless of how initiated—entities external to the University of North Carolina, by means of a donation or otherwise, might influence UNC academic program planning, course offerings, specific course requirements, or other material aspects of university curriculum.  Such guidelines shall stipulate, at a minimum:

·    the earliest possible consultation with faculty concerning discussions with external entities that implicate curriculum, and

·    that faculty so consulted include members sensitive to issues of shared governance and academic freedom as evidenced by service on university faculty governance bodies, college curriculum committees, or institutional accreditation committees, and

·    that, with appropriate consideration of any temporary need for confidentiality during negotiations, the university faculty governing body be provided with as much information as possible, as soon as possible, throughout such negotiation processes, and

·    that any new course offerings, specific course requirements, faculty appointments, or other material aspects of university curriculum proposed under such conditions shall undergo the normal and established processes of campus-level review, revision, and approval, and

·    that in such cases, the documentation submitted through the normal and established processes of campus-level review shall include a detailed description of the origins and the conditions, if any, attached to the curricular proposal.


[See http://uncfacultyassembly.northcarolina.edu/html/meetings/2007-08/May2008.htm ]



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“Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories
and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific
discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government
contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of
new electronic computers.

The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money
is ever present and is gravely to be regarded.

Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite
danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.

It is the task of statesmanship to mold, to balance, and to integrate these and other forces, new and old, within the principles
of our democratic system – ever aiming toward the supreme goals of our free society.

Another factor in maintaining balance involves the element of time. As we peer into society’s future, we – you and I, and our
government – must avoid the impulse to live only for today, plundering, for our own ease and convenience, the precious resources
of tomorrow. We cannot mortgage the material assets of our grandchildren without risking the loss also of their political and
spiritual heritage. We want democracy to survive for all generations to come, not to become the insolvent phantom of tomorrow.

President Dwight D. Eisenhower (1961)


[Excerpt from Farewell Address]



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