Only in Higher Education

Only in higher education could the idea of focusing on what you’re good at somehow be controversial. Post Hurricane Katrina, Tulane University in New Orleans has decided to make some major changes, including eliminating five technical undergraduate programs (civil and environmental engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and computer science, computer engineering and exercise and sports science). Here is the partial rationale:

The university will focus its undergraduate, professional and doctoral programs and research in areas where it has attained, or has the potential to achieve, world-class excellence. It will suspend admission to those programs that do not meet these criteria.

The most remarkable thing? That this is remarkable — because higher education would be a far better place if focusing on competencies were commonplace.


  1. Vic Fleischer says:

    I think it’s the part about firing tenured professors that’s really getting people’s attention.
    I get your point, tho.