Friday, April 18, 2014

A Vote Today (maybe)

The Grady College faculty meet today and we expect to vote on whether to change our departmental structure. The most likely options are:
  • Keep Ad/PR as is, combine Journalism and Telecommunication. In other words, two honking big departments.
  • Keep Ad/PR as is, combine Journalism with the Digital and Broadcast Journalism portion of Tele and create a Media Studies department with the remainder that's focused more on entertainment and critical/cultural stuff. In other words, three departments.
There are good arguments for both. There are good arguments against both. There are some terrible arguments also being made, some conspiracy theories being woven, and the kooks are having their say, nitpicking at process. In full disclosure, I favor three departments. I want a department focused on news.

So ... in other words, welcome to academe -- where people you never see all week suddenly show up and have their say.

And then we'll never see 'em again.

Okay, what's my Nate Silver-esque prediction? The model is ever-changing, of course. A week or so ago I put it at 2/3 likelihood of the "three-department solution." After some meetings this week, I've lowered that to a toss-up with the slightest of edges to the "three-department solution," but I don't feel confident about even that.

I think the dean breaks all ties. He may have to.

I've also added to the model a third option -- that we postpone the thing. I'd give that a 15 percent likelihood because, as you may or may not know, in academe there's never anything we won't spend more time studying to death.

I may live tweet the event. Check @barryhollander on Twitter to see if I am because, frankly, I doubt I'll actually speak.

Update (11:20 a.m.): because it's important we live up to the academic stereotype, there's talk we may have issues with the bylaws and will have to vote to vote, or some such nonsense, and the vote to vote may take a 2/3 vote. Got that? Good. I am updating the percentages. See below:
  • Three departments -- 40 percent
  • Two departments -- 42 percent
  • No vote at all -- 17 percent
  • Me killing several faculty -- 1 percent

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