You march with your signs and complain about college fees going up, all the while believing you will get the attention of someone who will come to your rescue. You think it’s so unfair you are being asked to pay higher fees when all you want is an education.
Well, I have news for you. For the answer as to why you’re being asked to pay more and more for that education, look no further than a front-page article in The Tribune. There you will find a story about an instructor at Cal Poly who collected $5,000 for not teaching a class (“Faculty complain about Orfalea course,” March 9).
A retired professor also was paid for the same class which he too did not teach. Aren’t union contracts grand?
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Tribune
I have been a professor in the Orfalea College of Business for roughly 13 years. I was a guest speaker in the class in question on the topic of business in China and India (“Faculty complain about Orfalea course,” March 9).
The students in this class were engaged and I was impressed by the quality of their questions and insights. The feedback I gleaned from this group of students expressed how much they enjoyed taking this class and how much they had learned from a proven business leader such as Paul Orfalea.
We are grateful for the support and time from Orfalea. His kindness to our college, students and faculty have made a positive difference in the lives of many. It is also not uncommon for an institution to host a lunch or dinner between students and a visitor such as Orfalea as a thank you and expression of gratitude.
The dispute at hand is not really about the class in question. In my opinion, we yet again have a group of disgruntled Cal Poly faculty members upset that the status quo has changed and they seek to stir the pot using and mischaracterizing the events surrounding this class as the mechanism.
Orfalea College Professor
I read with much dismay the portion of the article that appeared in The Tribune concerning a class taught by Paul Orfalea (“Faculty complain about Orfalea course,” March 9) that disclosed the following:
First, lecturer Jere Ramsey filed a grievance and received $5,000 for a class she didn’t teach.
Second, Mike Stebbins (retired), received an undisclosed compensation for not teaching or being present.
Third, meals were catered and paid for with donor funds. Why? When some classes have been cut or eliminated and fees are being increased, why oh why, do we stand for this nonsense?
San Luis Obispo
Undoubtedly, the curriculum and faculty at the Orfalea College of Business are excellent in all respects. Students fortunate enough to be admitted to Cal Poly will receive an excellent education from some of the best and dedicated professors at any university. My own experience validates that judgment.
However, it must also be said that a strong core curriculum and faculty, although being a necessary condition for a good education, is not a sufficient condition. Regardless of the field of endeavor, exposure to successful practitioners like Paul Orfalea enriches and deepens the educational experience.
Dean Dave Christy is to be commended for his vision in providing students enriching educational opportunities through classroom work and a host of role models through various programs that he has initiated (“Faculty complains about Orfalea course,” March 9).
Joseph E. Brocato
Director of the Executive Partners program, Orfalea College of Business