By Richard Vedder
I recently blogged about a day-long conference the Department of Education is putting on for 300 members of the Higher Education Establishment and their most intimate friends, the so-called Higher Education Summit, being held in Washington March 22. It is by invitation only. However, a shorter and more user-friendly conference is going on in our nation's capital on March 13, and I am inviting you -- at less than a zero cost (a free lunch is being provided).
On March 13, the American Enterprise Institute is sponsoring a conference entitled Higher Education After the Spellings Commission. It takes place at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) on March 13 at 12:30 p.m. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings will start things off, followed by a panel on the Spellings Commission results including Bob Zemsky of Penn, a Commission member skeptical of the group's accomplishments; Judith Eaton, the head of CHEA, the organization of accreditors (a topic on which the Spellings Commission devoted a fair amount of time) and Gene Hickok, former Undersecretary of Education, former Pennsylvania education commissioner, and now a reform-minded scholar at the Heritage Foundation.
Sparks may fly in the second panel. Author of two books on rising tuition, Ron Ehrenberg of Cornell and myself (of the Center for College Affordability and Productivity, AEI and Ohio University) will each make what I expect will be rather different presentations. Discussing our remarks and adding some of their own will be Sandy Baum of the College Board and AEI's Charles Murray, who has written provocatively suggesting too many kids go to college (Charles, co-author of the Bell Curve, has undergone more controversy in his lifetime than the rest of us on the various panels combined).
The third panel will get into curricular content and the role of governing boards. Moderated by CCAP's good friend Anne Neal, panelists include Mark Bauerlin, an Emory University English professor; SUNY Trustee Ed Cox, a New York lawyer known to many as Richard Nixon's son-in-law, and Harry Lewis of Harvard (and former Dean of the College), whose great book last year on higher education is must reading for all concerned about the undergraduate educational experience in America. Click here to register for this event. Attendance is limited, so get your reservation in now.