About a million years ago, when I was applying to colleges, high on my list was Harvey Mudd College near Los Angeles, California. At the time, it seemed like a really cool place for an aspiring physics major to be. Whether or not I would have been accepted into that elite student body was never determined, as it slipped off the list before I even got to the application stage. I no longer remember all the reasons why, but one factor certainly was that I had no desire to be that far away from home.

Harvey Mudd came to my attention again recently, thanks to this excerpt from a DarkHorse episode, which was inspired by a speech given by its current president at a White House summit on "STEMM, Equity, and Inclusion." (Yes, that's a double M; they've added Medicine. But dropped the A (Arts) that is often added. Pretty soon they're going to start including a "+" at the end.) The relevant line from her addres is this:

[On our campus] we also continuously celebrate our cultural value that every person, every student, every faculty member, every staff member, is responsible for the success of every other person on campus.

We can charitably hope that the full context of the quote lessens its inanity, but I'm not going to dig it out. It suffices to know that if Harvey Mudd's president did not know and mean exactly what she said, it has been said often enough by others for decades, probably at least a century. 

The good doctors Weinstein and Heying proceed to discuss the implications of that cultural value in this 11-minute video, which also does well at 1.5x speed if you want something shorter.

It's encouraging to hear people I respect calling out evils that I've been fighting for some 50 years, especially on a subject (education) so dear to my heart. Plus, I'm a sucker for anyone who appreciates Harrison Bergeron.

Posted by sursumcorda on Thursday, July 6, 2023 at 4:02 pm | Edit
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