Detail, east Portland photo, courtesy Miles Hochstein / Portland Ground.

For old times' sake
The bojack bumper sticker -- only $1.50!

To order, click here.

Excellent tunes -- free! And on your browser right now. Just click on Radio Bojack!

E-mail us here.


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on June 11, 2012 9:45 AM. The previous post in this blog was 40 years of Earl the Pearl. The next post in this blog is Here comes the hype for the Portland arts tax. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



Law and Taxation
How Appealing
TaxProf Blog
Mauled Again
Tax Appellate Blog
A Taxing Matter
Josh Marquis
Native America, Discovered and Conquered
The Yin Blog
Ernie the Attorney
Above the Law
The Volokh Conspiracy
Going Concern
Bag and Baggage
Wealth Strategies Journal
Jim Hamilton's World of Securities Regulation
World of Work
The Faculty Lounge
Lowering the Bar
OrCon Law

Hap'nin' Guys
Tony Pierce
Parkway Rest Stop
Along the Gradyent
Dwight Jaynes
Bob Borden
Dingleberry Gazette
The Red Electric
Iced Borscht
Jeremy Blachman
Dean's Rhetorical Flourish
Straight White Guy
As Time Goes By
Dave Wagner
Jeff Selis
Alas, a Blog
Scott Hendison
The View Through the Windshield
Appliance Blog
The Bleat

Hap'nin' Gals
My Whim is Law
Lelo in Nopo
Attorney at Large
Linda Kruschke
The Non-Consumer Advocate
10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place
A Pig of Success
Attorney at Large
Margaret and Helen
Kimberlee Jaynes
Cornelia Seigneur
And Sew It Goes
Mile 73
Rainy Day Thoughts
That Black Girl
Posie Gets Cozy
Cat Eyes
Rhi in Pink
Ragwaters, Bitters, and Blue Ruin
Rose City Journal
Type Like the Wind

Portland and Oregon
Isaac Laquedem
Rantings of a [Censored] Bus Driver
Jeff Mapes
Vintage Portland
The Portlander
South Waterfront
Amanda Fritz
O City Hall Reporters
Guilty Carnivore
Old Town by Larry Norton
The Alaunt
Bend Blogs
Lost Oregon
Cafe Unknown
Tin Zeroes
David's Oregon Picayune
Mark Nelsen's Weather Blog
Travel Oregon Blog
Portland Daily Photo
Portland Building Ads
Portland Food and
Dave Knows Portland
Idaho's Portugal
Alameda Old House History
MLK in Motion

Retired from Blogging
Various Observations...
The Daily E-Mail
Saving James
Portland Freelancer
Furious Nads (b!X)
Izzle Pfaff
The Grich
Kevin Allman
AboutItAll - Oregon
Lost in the Details
Worldwide Pablo
Tales from the Stump
Whitman Boys
Two Pennies
This Stony Planet
1221 SW 4th
I am a Fish
Here Today
What If...?
Superinky Fixations
The Rural Bus Route
Another Blogger
Mikeyman's Computer Treehouse
Portland Housing Blog

Wonderfully Wacky
Dave Barry
Borowitz Report
Stuff White People Like
Worst of the Web

Valuable Time-Wasters
My Gallery of Jacks
Litterbox, On the Prowl
Litterbox, Bag of Bones
Litterbox, Scratch
Ride That Donkey
Singin' Horses
Rally Monkey
Simon Swears
Strong Bad's E-mail

Oregon News
The Oregonian
Portland Tribune
Willamette Week
The Sentinel
Southeast Examiner
Northwest Examiner
Sellwood Bee
Mid-County Memo
Vancouver Voice
Eugene Register-Guard
OPB - Portland
Salem Statesman-Journal
Oregon Capitol News
Portland Business Journal
Daily Journal of Commerce
Oregon Business
Portland Info Net
McMinnville News Register
Lake Oswego Review
The Daily Astorian
Bend Bulletin
Corvallis Gazette-Times
Roseburg News-Review
Medford Mail-Tribune
Ashland Daily Tidings
Newport News-Times
Albany Democrat-Herald
The Eugene Weekly
Portland IndyMedia
The Columbian

The Beatles
Bruce Springsteen
Joni Mitchell
Ella Fitzgerald
Steve Earle
Joe Ely
Stevie Wonder
Lou Rawls

E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Monday, June 11, 2012

Speaking of those Portland State peer mentors

Our post of last night about the new hire at Portland State University prompted this response from a reader:

This article compliments the one you posted about the PSU graduate with the Educational Leadership degree. He was a peer mentor, and mentors are mentioned in this article about problems with the University Studies program at PSU. I read a few years ago that a group of professors were very dissatisfied with the US program and lobbied the administration to abandon it because they felt it did not give students a good college education. The program substitutes a thematic-based inquiry general studies course for the former distribution or survey courses all students had to take. About the only way one could escape the US program and get a solid general studies foundation was to go to PCC and get an AA degree and then transfer to PSU. This is what my son did -- I would not have let him go to PSU under the US program even though his major is math. We wanted him to get a thorough education in a broad range of subjects instead of a hodgepodge of stuff taught by faculty from disparate disciplines.

Here is another article on the program -- this one is from 2000. The program started in 1994 and immediately had problems with faculty critics. I can't remember the name of the woman university president who initiated the program. She implemented many innovative changes in the way the university functioned, but most of them were style over substance, and eventually she left for a school that appreciated her style.

I am glad to see that some people at the top are taking education seriously, though I have to wonder why now and not six or more years ago. It was bad then, so why are they just figuring it out now after more than a dozen years with the program in place?

Perhaps our readers can answer that question.

Comments (10)

I am not an academic or a teacher and it has been 40+ years since I attended U of O (before it was Nike U) and PSU, when it was a working kids school. However from what I see of my friend's kids who are currently in a school of some kind in the Oregon, it seems to me that grade school now equals kindergarten, high school equals elementary school, and college of some sort, equals a mediocre high school.
I find this depressing and dangerous for the future.

I believe the name of the university president the reader can't remember is Judith Ramaley President from 1990 to 1997

Around 40% of PPS kids drop out. Of those who do graduate with plans to attend college, many find that they must take remedial math and English. Obviously, $11,500 per student per year simply isn't enough money....

WHY do parent allow their children to be the guinea pigs for some educrat's "innovative" approach to education? Why would an adult get sucked into an experimental program if they were paying to be educated? Fads are a fact of life in the education field as everyone searches for the silver bullet for creating wise and wonderful students - in their own image. You have to wonder why public schools are so eager to spend millions of dollars on books and training for methods that are proven to be less than satisfactory just because they fit the newest model of cool. Kind of like light rail and condos except the public is not educated on what works in education and falls prey to the professionals. Look for educators who are experts in the discipline they are teaching rather than experts in the newest way to teach it.
......... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Below are excerpts from The Minnesota Daily from 1996.

Many of her colleagues say Ramaley's crowning achievement at Portland State is an innovative undergraduate education program called University Studies.
The program "redefines what it means to be an undergraduate and what the undergraduate experience is all about," Pernsteiner said.
University Studies, initiated in 1994 by the university's provost and a team of faculty members and championed by Ramaley, brings together faculty and students from various backgrounds and engages them in community-based research and service projects throughout the Portland area.

The University District reclamation project was another of Ramaley's key initiatives.
The plan calls for a close partnership between city government, business leaders and Portland State to develop the area's housing and create new retail centers. The plan also calls for the construction of an elementary school, private and university buildings and a possible light rail system to the school. The goal is to reclaim the decaying area and renew it.
"The vision for the University District was President Ramaley's," Pernsteiner said. "It got the city, the university and the local development community working together to achieve some things that usually don't happen."

Yeah, I'll tell ya' what I believe is decaying....

I started PSU in 1997 and ended up being required to complete the US program. For those confused the US system replaces the classic General Education system. Instead of a math major taking, say, some literature courses or vice versa each student over the first couple of years is required to complete these 1 year blocks of courses focusing on nothing. NOTHING.

My first year I took Einstein's Dreams. What it was about I couldn't tell you. I learned a bit about who Einstein was, but next to nothing about physics or writing or politics. Nothing. I don't even think the class was graded, I remember nothing I could have been graded on.

In the end it is still around because of money. It keeps kids at PSU because the credits don't transfer and it keeps them in school longer because of the 1 year block nature of the classes. Any disruption throws you off.

It was a huge rip off. Still is.

PSU's "University Studies" is the biggest crock of academic nonsense I have ever seen. My son is two terms away from meeting graduation requirements to get a PSU degree in Liberal Studies, even though he has satisfied department requirements for a major in German and a minor in Music. This is because he is a student who can't sit in groups and breathe the farts of other students while they listen and hold forth on their contributions to mentored group projects in such atomized subjects as "the Chicana-Latina experience", or "Controversies in the History of the American Borderlands" etc etc The only way to get out of such nonsense is get your degree in Liberal studies, and hope any prospective employer will like your answer, should they ask how you chose your major. Not that there will definitely be too many prospective employers, what with the economy and all, especially since he doesn't go in for Eco-terrorism, and such.

Once, I was a liberal, morphed into a centrist, and now I consider myself on the right side of center-right...and the experience most directly tied to this evolution would be the forced contemplation of the absolutely moronic, group-massaged, completely extraneous and contrived coursework necessary for a shy, dreamy, slightly misanthropic student to get a degree in German with a minor in Music out of PSU.

I am a senior at PSU, finishing after a 12 year lay off. About 1/2 the people in my senior-level classes are borderline illiterate, and put forth no effort. They will graduate with a degree, as will I.

I was a transfer student, and wasn't required to take University Studies (I got to take math instead). University Studies teaches nothing, but funds classes nobody would take willingly if they had any intentions of working someday as opposed to being a career student.

Echoing the post of Gaye, PSU changed the rules on me so many times I will have taken an extra year worth of classes to get a Bachelor's. My PSU courses will transfer, but they don't really count for any conventional degree programs elsewhere. And I ended up having to take University Studies anyway in my last year.

Years ago when I was a junior, PSU taught me college was a joke. Within the past year, PSU taught me college is essentially organized, state supported crime.

All for the low low price of a few decades of indenture.

This is the classic example of the emperor having no clothes. I believe there are many more people eater to be educated than patronized and a lot more professors wanting to teach real content-rich material from their disciplines that leads to mastery of the subject.

As a teacher I resented being asked to politicize my teachings and cater to liberal agendas. I hated asking less of my students than they were capable of, and they would have resented me if I did plus call me names and give me a hard time because they didn't respect me. I have been a student myself for too many years to put up with nonsense education and pick my instructors carefully.

Respect has to go both ways. If I get a stinker anymore, I make sure I let the dept. chair (or higher if need be) know why I am dissatisfied. Public schools have less of a need to be concerned with their customers, and PSU is terrible about putting the faculty and everything else ahead of student learning. But it is still worth complaining and getting the word out about the problems at PSU and making One's concerns public. The institution cannot change until the problems are acknowledged.


As a lawyer/blogger, I get
to be a member of:

In Vino Veritas

Louis Jadot, Pouilly-Fuissé 2011
Trader Joe's, Grower's Reserve Pinot Noir 2012
Zenato, Lugana San Benedetto 2012
Vintjs, Cabernet 2010
14 Hands, Hot to Trot White 2012
Rainstorm, Oregon Pinot Gris 2012
Silver Palm, North Coast Cabernet 2011
Andrew Rich, Gewurtztraminer 2008
Rodney Strong, Charlotte's Home Sauvignon Blanc 2012
Canoe Ridge, Pinot Gris, Expedition 2012
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir Rose 2012
Dark Horse, Big Red Blend No. 01A
Elk Cove, Pinot Noir Rose 2012
Fletcher, Shiraz 2010
Picollo, Gavi 2011
Domaine Eugene Carrel, Jongieux 2012
Eyrie, Pinot Blanc 2010
Atticus, Pinot Noir 2010
Walter Scott, Pinot Noir, Holstein 2011
Shingleback, Cabernet, Davey Estate 2010
Coppola, Sofia Rose 2012
Joel Gott, 851 Cabernet 2010
Pol Roget Reserve Sparkling Wine
Mount Eden Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains 2009
Rombauer Chardonnay, Napa Valley 2011
Beringer, Chardonnay, Napa Reserve 2011
Kim Crawford, Sauvignon Blanc 2011
Schloss Vollrads, Spaetlese Rheingau 2010
Belle Glos, Pinot Noir, Clark & Telephone 2010
WillaKenzie, Pinot Noir, Estate Cuvee 2010
Blackbird Vineyards, Arise, Red 2010
Chauteau de Beaucastel, Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2005
Northstar, Merlot 2008
Feather, Cabernet 2007
Silver Oak, Cabernet, Alexander Valley 2002
Silver Oak, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2002
Trader Joe's, Chardonnay, Grower's Reserve 2012
Silver Palm, Cabernet, North Coast 2010
Shingleback, Cabernet, Davey Estate 2010
E. Guigal, Cotes du Rhone 2009
Santa Margherita, Pinot Grigio 2011
Alamos, Cabernet 2011
Cousino Macul, Cabernet, Anitguas Reservas 2009
Dreaming Tree Cabernet 2010
1967, Toscana 2009
Charamba, Douro 2008
Horse Heaven Hills, Cabernet 2010
Lorelle, Horse Heaven Hills Pinot Grigio 2011
Avignonesi, Montepulciano 2004
Lorelle, Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2007
Mercedes Eguren, Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Lorelle, Columbia Valley Cabernet 2011
Purple Moon, Merlot 2011
Purple Moon, Chardonnnay 2011
Horse Heaven Hills, Cabernet 2010
Lorelle, Horse Heaven Hills Pinot Grigio 2011
Avignonesi, Montepulciano 2004
Lorelle, Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2007
Mercedes Eguren, Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Lorelle, Columbia Valley Cabernet 2011
Purple Moon, Merlot 2011
Purple Moon, Chardonnnay 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend No. 12
Opula Red Blend 2010
Liberte, Pinot Noir 2010
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Indian Wells Red Blend 2010
Woodbridge, Chardonnay 2011
King Estate, Pinot Noir 2011
Famille Perrin, Cotes du Rhone Villages 2010
Columbia Crest, Les Chevaux Red 2010
14 Hands, Hot to Trot White Blend
Familia Bianchi, Malbec 2009
Terrapin Cellars, Pinot Gris 2011
Columbia Crest, Walter Clore Private Reserve 2009
Campo Viejo, Rioja, Termpranillo 2010
Ravenswood, Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Quinta das Amoras, Vinho Tinto 2010
Waterbrook, Reserve Merlot 2009
Lorelle, Horse Heaven Hills, Pinot Grigio 2011
Tarantas, Rose
Chateau Lajarre, Bordeaux 2009
La Vielle Ferme, Rose 2011
Benvolio, Pinot Grigio 2011
Nobilo Icon, Pinot Noir 2009
Lello, Douro Tinto 2009
Quinson Fils, Cotes de Provence Rose 2011
Anindor, Pinot Gris 2010
Buenas Ondas, Syrah Rose 2010
Les Fiefs d'Anglars, Malbec 2009
14 Hands, Pinot Gris 2011
Conundrum 2012
Condes de Albarei, Albariño 2011
Columbia Crest, Walter Clore Private Reserve 2007
Penelope Sanchez, Garnacha Syrah 2010
Canoe Ridge, Merlot 2007
Atalaya do Mar, Godello 2010
Vega Montan, Mencia
Benvolio, Pinot Grigio
Nobilo Icon, Pinot Noir, Marlborough 2009

The Occasional Book

Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 115
At this date last year: 21
Total run in 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

Clicky Web Analytics