Toledo Talk

Sounds like something fishy is going on at the UT administration.

The piece below reads as a "where there's smoke, there's fire" story. It seems like with a little digging, there might be some pretty bad dirt found on the UT administration soon. Even without a full-blown scandal, it's infuriating to read this stuff knowing how so many full-time professors and low-level employees have been let go, and how hard each "regular" academic department has to fill out endless forms, assess, and prove their worth each and every year to increasingly impossible standards. I really hope The Blade keeps investigating this mess.

http://www.toledoblade.com/Education/2014/02/28/Stansley-s-exit-from-UT-raises-big-questions.html

created by MarcMc on Mar 01, 2014 at 11:07:07 am     Education     Comments: 28

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I've never been a huge fan of Gold (Hooray, he left) or Jacobs. I also think that there is a risk of "fishyness" whenever pubic trust and private sector intertwine.

It will be interesting to see how the coverage goes, considering that Joe Zerbey is Chairman of the UT board, and ultimately responsible for the University, while at the same time being Vice-President of Newspaper Operations for BCI, and President and General Manager of The Blade. Awkward.

Meanwhile, bad timing for UT considering they have paused a $200 million capital campaign and are looking for a replacement for Vern Snyder, Vice President of Advancement. That job's a hot potato right now.

Curious, do you work at UT?

posted by justread on Mar 01, 2014 at 12:02:55 pm     #  

I graduated a few years ago and am now a graduate student. I know some people who are faculty members and have seen firsthand the decline in personnel, class sizes, and class offerings. I understand that universities need to be more efficient and lean, but it is a bit absurd for the administration to deal with the parts of the university that directly interact with the students with an iron grip, and then be so loosey-goosey with these other, inner-circle folks.

posted by MarcMc on Mar 01, 2014 at 12:43:04 pm     #   1 person liked this

Agreed.

posted by justread on Mar 01, 2014 at 01:26:25 pm     #  

“It was about supporting economic development and an off-shoot of good economic development would be the creation of jobs,” he said. “Originally, it was meant to support start-up enterprises.”

Politician-speak. All you've gotta do is throw the right jargon out there and other bureaucrats throw money at you? "Create jobs", "economic opportunity", etc....and they all just fawn. Really? I'm in the wrong line of work.

Neither Mr. Stansley nor UT officials could provide an estimate of the number of jobs created with the $10 million in public investment since 2008. Heavy investments in the solar industry, especially solar panel-maker Xunlight, skews the numbers because of downsizing, he said.

Aww, bullshit. For most of the country, the solar industry is going down by the bow (undercut by China). What is this "downsizing" bullshit? That isn't even good enough to be called a euphemism. It's total bullshit.

posted by oldhometown on Mar 01, 2014 at 03:45:51 pm     #   1 person liked this

It is sad how the place has changed from a school where the most important thing was education, to what it is now, which no one seems to know. In the name of making UT "relevant" the conservative political machine in Ohio continues to pack the board with people who have mutual financial interests in making money from UT. People like Stansley, who I believe has no degree, (I think it is all a deja vu of the Noe thing) but a lot of business ties, as well as political ties to Columbus and the area pack these boards and probably feed money to the political machines that placed them there so it is a big circle of money love between the state politicians and the business leaders who benefit from "the creative destruction" they have been wreaking upon UT, the students, faculty and staff and the public who are all the big losers here.

Meanwhile, folks who hate government, public education and public anything, including plebeians and the poor families who put their hope in an affordable college education for their children, have been put in charge to "straighten things" out and have made a bigger mess than ever which deficits, drunken sailor type spending on essentially worthless junk, continue to lower the collective moral and hope of students, faculty and staff and one by one the quality ones of all these are bailing out.

It used to be that people who had no dream to go to college to learn how to think, create, and lead had only the hope of getting a "Job" now a "job" is all that UT has a hope to offer, and at the same time offering no hope of real learning. Even the value of such a degree from a place like UT is becoming questionable. Society, including the private sector need thinking people, not just trained specialists who focus on what they are trained to do.

It is also ironic that these folks who elevate private industry and its separation and independence from government have turned UT into a huge public holding company, and a pretty lousy one at that. UT does not know what it is anymore. An institution of higher learning? A vocational training school? A political hog troff for those who pay to play? A business? A country club for elites? It is a real mess.

posted by ilovetoledo on Mar 01, 2014 at 03:50:00 pm     #   1 person liked this

ilovetoledo posted at 02:50:00 PM on Mar 01, 2014:

It is sad how the place has changed from a school where the most important thing was education, to what it is now, which no one seems to know. In the name of making UT "relevant" the conservative political machine in Ohio continues to pack the board with people who have mutual financial interests in making money from UT. People like Stansley, who I believe has no degree, (I think it is all a deja vu of the Noe thing) but a lot of business ties, as well as political ties to Columbus and the area pack these boards and probably feed money to the political machines that placed them there so it is a big circle of money love between the state politicians and the business leaders who benefit from "the creative destruction" they have been wreaking upon UT, the students, faculty and staff and the public who are all the big losers here.

Meanwhile, folks who hate government, public education and public anything, including plebeians and the poor families who put their hope in an affordable college education for their children, have been put in charge to "straighten things" out and have made a bigger mess than ever which deficits, drunken sailor type spending on essentially worthless junk, continue to lower the collective moral and hope of students, faculty and staff and one by one the quality ones of all these are bailing out.

It used to be that people who had no dream to go to college to learn how to think, create, and lead had only the hope of getting a "Job" now a "job" is all that UT has a hope to offer, and at the same time offering no hope of real learning. Even the value of such a degree from a place like UT is becoming questionable. Society, including the private sector need thinking people, not just trained specialists who focus on what they are trained to do.

It is also ironic that these folks who elevate private industry and its separation and independence from government have turned UT into a huge public holding company, and a pretty lousy one at that. UT does not know what it is anymore. An institution of higher learning? A vocational training school? A political hog troff for those who pay to play? A business? A country club for elites? It is a real mess.

The "conservative political machine" is the one destroying public university education?

Have you even paid attention to things happening in places evil conservatives don't control...like say California?

This is a bigger problem than conservative/liberal. It's a cheap shot when there is so much evidence from states that can barely elect any evil money-grubbing conservatives that they too are faced with the issues you bring up--deficits, drunken sailor spending on junk, etc.

Not trying to knock you unnecessarily--just try to control the immediate knee jerk. BTW, I was a student at UT for a time when we had a (D) governor (Mr. Celeste) and the sun didn't shine any brighter and the faculty didn't bitch any less about bloated admin, stupid bullshit forms they had to fill out, etc.

posted by oldhometown on Mar 01, 2014 at 04:09:29 pm     #   3 people liked this

It is how I see things from my very long and very close up perspective. I change nothing.

posted by ilovetoledo on Mar 01, 2014 at 04:16:40 pm     #  

"BTW, I was a student at UT for a time when we had a (D) governor (Mr. Celeste) and the sun didn't shine any brighter and the faculty didn't bitch any less about bloated admin, stupid bullshit forms they had to fill out, etc."

Yes. And the classes were always closed by the time I got to the front of that freaking line. Dam you Celeste.

posted by justread on Mar 01, 2014 at 04:33:38 pm     #  

I just want to add that of course the problem is complex and that the motivations in Columbus and here are probably very mixed. There are indeed well-meaning people along with those intending to only feather their nests. There are many perspectives, but in the many decades of my observation the one I have painted above seems to stand out to me, at least from one on whom the bullshit seems to continue to roll down to.

posted by ilovetoledo on Mar 01, 2014 at 04:35:27 pm     #   1 person liked this

I think this is going to be a major scandal. First, how is it that the State allowed Stansley to accummulate $1 million in back sales tax before attempting to garnish his wages? I think those of us who are less politically connected would have had action taken on them a long time ago.

Then Jacobs aided Stansley's fraudulent behavior by agreeing to pay his $1,200-a-day fee to a third party (his brother's company) so the State couldn't get at the money.

How does the Board justify taking millions of student dollars and use it to support start-up companies? What's wrong with UT's Board of Trustees? First they brought us the Vik Kapoor debacle, then Dan Johnson who sold the main campus down the river to affect the medical college "merger," and now Jacobs who owes his soul to Stansley (who as chairman of the Board got Jacobs the presidency without a search)? If they don't fire Jacobs soon, UT's future is going to be rocky.

posted by Starr15 on Mar 01, 2014 at 07:16:19 pm     #   3 people liked this

A) Going to be rocky either way.
B) Johnson is not the cause.

posted by justread on Mar 01, 2014 at 07:21:22 pm     #   2 people liked this

I didn't blame Johnson in my post.

posted by Starr15 on Mar 01, 2014 at 11:37:03 pm     #  

No, (nor did I say that you did) but it's a classic technique to invoke someone's name with an alternate slur, and in the barrel they go. If he isn't to blame, maybe the better part of valor is to leave him out.

posted by justread on Mar 02, 2014 at 07:51:50 am     #  

Johnson is often credited as the Judas who sold UT into the hands of its current tormentors. Paid for with his 300K+ salary for "developing the corridor." Ha, ha! But he probably did not have much choice when confronted by the Stansley Jacobs mafioso.

But he is a poster boy for what is all wrong with UT. He and others like him get huge salaries for essentially nothing. On the other the poor faculty and workers who really do the work are continually reminded what worthless pieces of shit they are by the administration through their big brother strong arm policies, not negotiating seriously, not honoring contracts, and when they do feel like it is is an offer of a 10% pay cut, higher insurance, less benefits, all out support for state bill 5, threats to outsource everyone....etc. It is crap like that that poisons the waters of the fount of good will around here.

This has been going on since the 90s. Now, just like with the first bad president, forget his name, then Kapoor and all the other six figure Henchmen, they bail with their golden parachutes, like Stansley, and then some other thug with an even higher salary comes along who is going to "fix up this joint!" And the circus thus continues. Meanwhile, worthy faculty and students pass us by with gaping stares as if it were some continuous train wreck that is interesting to look at but want no part of....

posted by ilovetoledo on Mar 02, 2014 at 10:06:44 am     #   1 person liked this

A UT faculty member told me that when Jacobs took over he enlisted something called "Captain Integrity." It was an "anonymous" program where employees were to tattle on other employees' unethical/unlawful behavior. Kevin West, leftover from the Kapoor administration and a 6-figure employee with a law degree (but was never able to pass the Bar Exam), would use "guilty as accused" interrogation techniques to grill the people--many of whom were victims of fellow employees who created scandals just to skewer them.

I find it ironic that Jacobs has gone down the road of unethical (illegal?) behavior in aiding Stansley in not having his wages garnished.

posted by Starr15 on Mar 02, 2014 at 11:47:50 am     #   1 person liked this

ilovetoledo posted at 09:06:44 AM on Mar 02, 2014:

Johnson is often credited as the Judas who sold UT into the hands of its current tormentors. Paid for with his 300K+ salary for "developing the corridor." Ha, ha! But he probably did not have much choice when confronted by the Stansley Jacobs mafioso.

But he is a poster boy for what is all wrong with UT. He and others like him get huge salaries for essentially nothing. On the other the poor faculty and workers who really do the work are continually reminded what worthless pieces of shit they are by the administration through their big brother strong arm policies, not negotiating seriously, not honoring contracts, and when they do feel like it is is an offer of a 10% pay cut, higher insurance, less benefits, all out support for state bill 5, threats to outsource everyone....etc. It is crap like that that poisons the waters of the fount of good will around here.

This has been going on since the 90s. Now, just like with the first bad president, forget his name, then Kapoor and all the other six figure Henchmen, they bail with their golden parachutes, like Stansley, and then some other thug with an even higher salary comes along who is going to "fix up this joint!" And the circus thus continues. Meanwhile, worthy faculty and students pass us by with gaping stares as if it were some continuous train wreck that is interesting to look at but want no part of....

Salary equals bad. Umkay. Never mind the individuals, cirumstances, politics, challenges, initiatives, strategies and differences between administrators.

"judas" "six figure henchmen" "golden parachutes" "thug with a higher salary" etc.

You are obviously clueless about what administrators do, and the differences between the personalities, ethics, and attributes of the individual adminstrators who serve in leadership roles.

This is a patently class-warfare, jealous-ass hater post.

posted by justread on Mar 02, 2014 at 11:56:45 am     #  

justread, ILT's post made me think of how incredibly dificult it must be to run a University with every faculty member having their own ideas as to how things should be run. You couldn't pay me enough.

posted by Molsonator on Mar 02, 2014 at 12:51:47 pm     #  

Me either. Yet people think they "do nothing."

posted by justread on Mar 02, 2014 at 01:29:53 pm     #  

I guess I struck a nerve. By the way, I say it all dispassionately. I am one of the "good ones." I keep my mouth shut and follow orders cheerfully like a good soldier. I don't gossip or complain, but just keep my mouth shut obeying whatever nonsense comes down the road. I make the most of what I do and try to be part of the solution than the problem. What I write here is what I have seen and continue to see and this administration has done absolutely nothing to make me think I am wrong. On the contrary, with every edict and proclamation issued ex cathedra I only think of how gracious charitable my phraseology has been.

If they want to create a different impression then show more trust towards the students, faculty and staff. Treat them as adults instead of stupid wards that they must constantly correct and command around. Treat them equitably, negotiate in good faith. Show that they, their work, and opinions have value.

I have been a loyal and good employee for UT. I want it to be more than a job, but find it harder and harder. I will stay until it no longer meets my needs. Then I will begin a new career in an environment that is not so dystopic, demoralized and angry.

Too bad, it does not have to be the way it is.

posted by ilovetoledo on Mar 02, 2014 at 03:36:00 pm     #   1 person liked this

For how long have I told you what a TOXIC and corrupt dump that UT was????? Look at my old posts! All I got was a lot of crap from people that write on this blog (not you ilovetoledo). I don't understand why the Blade is consulting Don Wedding from AAUP on this matter! AAUP is nothing but totally corrupt and in the toilet as we speak. Wedding and the Executive Director of AAUP/Toledo are involved in a firecracker law suite that involves on Weddings part identity theft, computer hacking and sexual harassment. Wedding is going down in flames for Federal crimes (he has also thrown his GF under the bus) and may be looking at prison time. The comments about that dolt Kevin West atr totally spot on. FYI...he and female that recently ran for judge in Lucas County are "besties for life". Nope, she didn't get my vote!

posted by RockChick on Mar 02, 2014 at 04:59:00 pm     #   1 person liked this

My posts probably make it sound as if I take more seriously than I do. But I do not really feel as if it is something anyone should allow their blood pressure to rise for. As I said the forces and issues are complex and reflect the respective struggles of national values, goals, and ideologies which are quite in disarray at the moment. Eventually everything will return to a quasi equilibrium for a while.

I want to add that Jacobs & Co. have won all the battles and will probably continue to do so. With state politics and a board behind them they can do no other. Their victory is Pyrrhic. They get everything they want, all the power and responsibility. It is his university to do what he wants with and there is no one left to really oppose. If it all falls flat, as it appears to be doing, then it is only the leadership's fault since they demand everything be done their way.

However, I just want to say I really do feel sorry for administrators as a class. I mean it. I am not being facetious. The lower level ones do an awful lot of grunt work and everything ends up being their fault. They are underpaid and over worked. The mid level ones I feel sorry for too. They have to dress to the nines, be like Mary Poppins, practically perfect in every way, and learn to fawn over their superiors and be perfectly obsequious, deferring and selfless towards them. There are even some good ones among the overlords.

Work? The lower level ones probably do a lot of work. But as a class, I cannot figure out much of what administrators do other than have meetings, concoct one vision statement and set of goals after another, assessments, plans etc....they seem to do a lot of that. They seem to eat a lot, argue over meanings of words in documents, and over what the next BS thing the people who are supposed to deal real work under them are supposed to do. I also think they must spend a lot of time just justifying their own positions, hence the constant BS.

I really genuinely feel sorry for them all as a race. I would rather do real work. Again, not to say that there are not many administrators who in fact do a lot of work and are sacrificial and very important. My hats off to them. They know who they are. They value themselves, the university and the students. They know I am not talking about them. I feel sorry for them because they are probably underpaid, overworked and under appreciated.

I do not really have anything more to say. I hate making people feel bad or undervalued, even when they deserve it. So, I will probably not be posting anymore on this topic. Again, I just present my view of how it all looks from where I can see what has been happening over the last several decades. I do not claim to be right and really do hope I am wrong for the sake of our posterity. My wishes for the leadership of UT is to make the best university ever in which people are drawn to like a magnet and we end up producing the best and brightest thinkers and doers of the future. I just do not see it happening with the present approach.

posted by ilovetoledo on Mar 02, 2014 at 05:05:50 pm     #   1 person liked this

My posts probably make it sound as if I take more seriously than I do. But I do not really feel as if it is something anyone should allow their blood pressure to rise for. As I said the forces and issues are complex and reflect the respective struggles of national values, goals, and ideologies which are quite in disarray at the moment. Eventually everything will return to a quasi equilibrium for a while.

I want to add that Jacobs & Co. have won all the battles and will probably continue to do so. With state politics and a board behind them they can do no other. Their victory is Pyrrhic. They get everything they want, all the power and responsibility. It is his university to do what he wants with and there is no one left to really oppose. If it all falls flat, as it appears to be doing, then it is only the leadership's fault since they demand everything be done their way.

However, I just want to say I really do feel sorry for administrators as a class. I mean it. I am not being facetious. The lower level ones do an awful lot of grunt work and everything ends up being their fault. They are underpaid and over worked. The mid level ones I feel sorry for too. They have to dress to the nines, be like Mary Poppins, practically perfect in every way, and learn to fawn over their superiors and be perfectly obsequious, deferring and selfless towards them. There are even some good ones among the overlords.

Work? The lower level ones probably do a lot of work. But as a class, I cannot figure out much of what administrators do other than have meetings, concoct one vision statement and set of goals after another, assessments, plans etc....they seem to do a lot of that. They seem to eat a lot, argue over meanings of words in documents, and over what the next BS thing the people who are supposed to deal real work under them are supposed to do. I also think they must spend a lot of time just justifying their own positions, hence the constant BS.

I really genuinely feel sorry for them all as a race. I would rather do real work. Again, not to say that there are not many administrators who in fact do a lot of work and are sacrificial and very important. My hats off to them. They know who they are. They value themselves, the university and the students. They know I am not talking about them. I feel sorry for them because they are probably underpaid, overworked and under appreciated.

I do not really have anything more to say. I hate making people feel bad or undervalued, even when they deserve it. So, I will probably not be posting anymore on this topic. Again, I just present my view of how it all looks from where I can see what has been happening over the last several decades. I do not claim to be right and really do hope I am wrong for the sake of our posterity. My wishes for the leadership of UT is to make the best university ever in which people are drawn to like a magnet and we end up producing the best and brightest thinkers and doers of the future. I just do not see it happening with the present approach.

posted by ilovetoledo on Mar 02, 2014 at 05:05:50 pm     #  

There is so much baggage in those posts you are gonna need a truck. :)

posted by justread on Mar 02, 2014 at 05:20:32 pm     #  

"A UT faculty member told me that when Jacobs took over he enlisted something called "Captain Integrity." It was an "anonymous" program where employees were to tattle on other employees' unethical/unlawful behavior. Kevin West, leftover from the Kapoor administration and a 6-figure employee with a law degree (but was never able to pass the Bar Exam), would use "guilty as accused" interrogation techniques to grill the people--many of whom were victims of fellow employees who created scandals just to skewer them."

This must not have been extended to regular employees because in 20 years at MCO/MUO/UTMC, I've never heard of it.

posted by nana on Mar 02, 2014 at 09:54:35 pm     #  

Nana: Actually Captain Integrity is primarily a healthcare facility related program. If you do a Google search for: "Captain Integrity University of Toledo" you'll see a link to the "Employee Compliance Guide--University of Toledo" PDF document. On Page 15 of that document will be an explanation of Captain Integrity. It extended across both UT campuses. UT even distributed magnets of a Superman-looking character with the website and phone number on where to report the suspicious activities of your fellow employees.

It's actually rather comical and childish. If you'd like to see what Captain Integrity looks like(!)--here's a link to a website:

http://www.captainintegrity.com/

posted by Starr15 on Mar 03, 2014 at 12:28:01 am     #   1 person liked this

Captain Integrity my ass! How would you feel, as a professional, being addressed with cartoon characters and being encouraged to rat out your co-workers??

posted by RockChick on Mar 03, 2014 at 03:39:24 pm     #  

RockChick posted at 02:39:24 PM on Mar 03, 2014:

Captain Integrity my ass! How would you feel, as a professional, being addressed with cartoon characters and being encouraged to rat out your co-workers??

I laughed about it and ignored the whole business. When it didn't go away, I started anonymously 'outing' members of upper management as closet homosexuals, fetishists and swingers. As a result everyone had to spend a couple hours in sensitivity training and learn just enough about harassment law to be dangerous to themselves but not to others.

posted by madjack on Mar 03, 2014 at 04:36:16 pm     #   3 people liked this

ilovetoledo posted at 03:16:40 PM on Mar 01, 2014:

It is how I see things from my very long and very close up perspective. I change nothing.

by long you mean "hole" and by "close" you mean sand right?

Anytime anyone can blame the republicans in a COMPLETELY bought and sold/union democratic town for LOCAL issues, you know the left is out of answers.

posted by dbw8906 on Mar 03, 2014 at 04:51:11 pm     #