Category Archives: Tweed

Taking academe a little less seriously.


Lifelike Sculpture of Man in Underwear Causes a Stir at Wellesley College

A lifelike sculpture of a man sleepwalking in his underwear has caused a stir at Wellesley College, and some students at the women’s college have signed a petition asking that the artwork be removed from a public space, The Boston Globe reported.

The statue, called “Sleepwalker,” is part of an exhibit featuring the sculptor Tony Matelli at the college’s Davis Museum. The Globe said the sculpture had been installed in a high-traffic area of the campus.


Union Raises Heck About Law Professors’ ‘Satanic’ $666 Pay Increase

A union representing faculty members at Cleveland State University’s Cleveland-Marshall College of Law has filed an unfair-labor-practice charge with Ohio’s labor-relations board, claiming that the law school’s dean retaliated against union organizers by giving them $666 raises, “in effect” calling them Satan.

The details of the dispute are spelled out in a post by Paul L. Caron, of Pepperdine University, at TaxProfBlog. The complaint, filed by Cleveland State’s chapter of the American Associa…


Grand Valley State U. Takes Down Sculpture After Spate of Student Parodies

Grand Valley State University, in Allendale, Mich., has removed a sculpture from its campus after several students used it to mimic a music video by the pop singer Miley Cyrus, reported.

The sculpture is a steel ball that hangs from a cable, and it resembles the large metal ball that the singer swings from while naked in the video for her new single, “Wrecking Ball.”

Students have always attempted to swing from the sculpture, but there has been a significant rise in those incidents thi…


Blinkered and Boxed, Students Fight Cheating

When you think about it, it’s surprising that blinders aren’t a more popular weapon in the fight against cheating. A set of screens that keeps eyes forward—and billow conspicuously when a student turns his head—seems like a cheaper solution, certainly, than paying a proctor to watch a student’s eyeballs on a Webcam. Nevertheless, people are talking about students at Thailand’s Kasetsart University, who fashioned some homemade blinders:

1185355_713599938665725_560462889_nThe hats, which were made out of computer paper, have gone v…


Ignorance Isn’t Bliss When It Comes to Quotations About Ignorance

In his speech on Wednesday at Knox College, President Obama declared, “If you think education is expensive, wait until you see how much ignorance costs in the 21st century.” And in The Chronicle’s article on the speech that day, because we knew the origin of that phrase and presumed that some of our readers would be familiar with the line too, we oh-so-helpfully weighed in, noting that Mr. Obama was “paraphrasing a line made famous by Derek Bok, the former Harvard president.”

You could look that…


Penn State Squirrels Don Festive Hats to Discuss Serious Issue

squirrelDrinking remains a problem on college campuses. However, a new public-service campaign by the rodent community at Pennsylvania State University aims to change all of that.

Penn State students, upon their 21st birthday, will receive a link to a special Web site promoting safe drinking habits. The site is hosted by the university’s health-services offices, but stars prominent members of the campus’s squirrel leadership, wearing appropriately festive hats. Make sure you turn your speakers on, as th…


The Smell of Support: Notre Dame Unveils Fragrance Line

Photo credit: U. of Notre Dame

U. of Notre Dame

The University of Notre Dame has long been known for its enthusiastic sports fans. Now, the South Bend Tribune reports, all of those rabid supporters will be able to show their commitment in a new way—with perfume and cologne. But don’t worry: They won’t get the chance to smell like Manti Te’o on game day.

The fragrances will be available in his and hers versions, to be called ND Gold Eau de Toilette and Lady Irish Eau de Parfum. Fighting Irish fans will be able to purchase offi…


David Foster Wallace’s Commencement Speech Is Revived, This Time in Video

Not many commencement speeches survive the day they’re given. Even fewer are active well beyond the lifetime of their author. The speech that the writer David Foster Wallace gave at Kenyon College in 2005 breaks both rules.

His address, informally titled “This Is Water,” was never filmed. However, it has been circulating on the Internet for years in transcribed form, particularly after Wallace’s suicide, in September  2008. Unlike his heavily footnoted, fractal-like novels, the speech was relati…


The Terror of Student Debt, in B-Movie Form

Ever get that tingly feeling that you’re being followed? Not by a turnip-wielding serial bludgeoner or an animated rocking horse—because those are just this reporter’s own personal nightmares—but by the specter of your student-loan payments? Then The Red, a new short film released online last week, is for you.

Borderline Films, the partnership behind the award-winning thriller Martha Marcy May Marlene, directed The Red. All the classic tropes are in place: There’s a shivering, defenseless young …


How Not to Handle Nerves About Teaching

Teaching a college course can surely give an inexperienced instructor butterflies. But one University of Pittsburgh graduate student’s strategy for coping with that stress didn’t work out so well.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that Nancy Bruni, a Pitt graduate student, got nervous about teaching a class in March, and allegedly made bomb threats to avoid it.

A criminal complaint filed by the campus police said Ms. Bruni claimed to be anxious and depressed. She also told the police that her …