UV Letters

Work Backwards: A Design Thinking Approach to Higher Education

Jul 13, 2018
In my copious spare time, I enjoy compiling a list of bad ideas for universities.
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A Nation at Risk

Jun 29, 2018
Students come from abroad to attend an American university. They do well in school and find jobs that allowed them to stay in the U.S. They wind their way to building innovative, market-leading companies, creating tens of thousands of jobs and meaningful economic advantage for their adopted country. The story has been told time and time again. As of two years ago, approximately...
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The Dangerous Trades

Jun 15, 2018
Few readers of the UV Letter live with danger on a daily basis. I can count on one hand the number of times I've faced danger. Growing up in peaceable Canada, the only danger I can remember is one time when I forgot to don a jockstrap for a hockey game. (I played goalie.) I never heard a gunshot or saw a gun until...
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The Real Open University

Jun 1, 2018
It's now clear that the 12-year-old boy living in my house is either my son, or has been reading the UV Letter. Last weekend Leo tried to convince me to let him buy a new Playstation game called Detroit: Become Human about androids and the future of Detroit, because...
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Artificial Intelligence: Hero Or Villain For Higher Education?

May 18, 2018
Before there was artificial intelligence, there was natural intelligence. And in the world of comedy, no natural intelligence shone as bright as Doug Kenney's. In the 1970s, Kenney was the comic genius...
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The Real Cruelty of College Admissions

May 4, 2018
T.S. Eliot's The Wasteland famously begins "April is the cruellest month," and nowadays nowhere is that more apt than college admissions. As Inside Higher Education reported, last month Brown University admitted 2,566 applicants and...
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If You're Waiting Too Long For Your Food, Blame College

Apr 20, 2018
The fraternity of former restaurant workers is large and proud. It's also not hard to recognize us. It might be the efficient-yet-elegant way we clear our plates. Or the way we pour wine, slightly twisting the bottle at the end.
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Human Capital Wreckage

Apr 6, 2018
Millions of workers requiring reskilling are ill-served by our current one-size-fits-all approach to higher education.
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Planned Obsolescence

Mar 23, 2018
My first real job was a triumphant lesson in unplanned obsolescence. I landed a paid internship at a New York PR firm called Creamer Dickson Basford and was assigned to the Pizza Hut account. It was an auspicious summer for Pizza Hut public relations. Not only was Pizza Hut launching...
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Stonehenge

Mar 9, 2018
Of the dozens of brilliant moments in Christopher Guest and Rob Reiner's masterful rock parody Spinal Tap, my favorite is an ambitious plan gone awry. Faced with a case of the drabs on their U.S. tour, lead guitar Nigel Tufnel suggests reviving a number...
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