Saturday, April 21, 2012

Update on the Foreign Language Requirement

Our friends from Spanish and Portuguese have informed us that the School of Humanities at UC Irvine decided to not tamper with the Foreign Language Requirement after all. Currently, all Humanities Majors are required to take a Foreign Language (other than English) up to the 2C Level to fulfill a general education requirement. All other majors only have to take up to 1C or the equivalent.

But, really... we just keep getting all types of information saying one thing and then another. Perhaps it is time to settle things and ask that the responses to the Needs Attention Memo be made more clear and transparent.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

DECADE's Response to Needs Attention

TO: Michael Gottfredson, EVC/Provost
Vicki Ruiz, Dean, School of Humanities
James Steintrager, Acting Dean, School of Humanities

RE: Department of Comparative Literature Response to “Needs Attention” Designation

As graduate students in the Social Ecology Group for a Diverse Educational Community and Doctoral Experience (DECADE), a group established to address issues of climate, access, and retention of racial and ethnic minority graduate students in the School of Social Ecology, we are writing to express our concern about the “Needs Attention” memo provided to various units within the School of Humanities by the UCI administration. We add our voice to the ranks of various groups and academic units that have spoken out against potential cuts to the Humanities. In addition to the intrinsic value of a liberal arts education, many Social Ecology students take classes in the Humanities and have established emphases in Critical Theory, Women's Studies, Asian Studies, African American Studies, and Visual Studies. Our fields of knowledge are interrelated and the Social Sciences often look to the Humanities for inspiration, theory, and critique. These factors were not included in the “Needs Attention” memo, but these connections are crucial. We strongly urge the administration to look beyond rigid quantitative indicators such as student-faculty ratio when evaluating programs and consider the importance and value that these programs provide to both undergraduate and graduate students at UC Irvine who are not officially “in” the humanities. Cuts to these programs are not the answer to fiscal crisis and will only harm the university as a whole over the long term.

Respectfully submitted by:

Social Ecology’s Diverse Educational Community and Doctoral Experience (DECADE) Group