Virginia Commonwealth University’s poor stature is its own doing.

I had an exam in a class on Monday at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). During the next class, today, the professor for the class, Dr. Michelle Peace, said that she had seen several instances of suspicious behavior during the class and she had to issue several warnings to the students. She went on to say that she had worked to improve the stature of VCU in the eyes of the academic and professional community and she didn’t want students undoing her work.

She went on to say that the university had also worked for many years to improve its image. And while I agree wholeheartedly with her opinion on this matter, and frankly, if they’re cheating, give them a zero and report to them to the Honor Council, this university has done nothing to improve its image.

When you award someone a degree when he has failed to meet 10 of the 28 requirements for receiving the degree, you’re not improving your stature.

When you refused to rescind the degree awarded, you’re not improving your stature.

And, as most people probably know, I am referring to former City of Richmond Police Chief Rodney Monroe.

But it doesn’t just stop with him unfortunately. I was talking to a couple of people (who shall remain nameless) about a receiving a degree with a double major in Criminal Justice (the primary major) and Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (the secondary major). According to the bulletin for receiving a double major according to VCU’s website:

A double major is the concurrent fulfillment of the requirements of two majors. To earn a degree with two majors, the student must complete the courses required in each major, any collateral/prerequisite courses required for both majors and the general education requirements of the primary major.

According to the bulletin posted for a B.A. in Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness:

Collateral requirements

In addition to the homeland security and emergency preparedness courses required for the Bachelor of Arts degree, students must complete the study of a foreign language through the intermediate level (202 or 205) through courses or placement.

While I was talking to these students, they asked why would someone go for a minor in Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness when you could just go for a double major and take a couple more classes.

I brought up the fact that you had to go take two additional language classes on top of what is required for a B.S. in Criminal Justice, which only requires a foreign language through a 102 level (two classes).

Care to guess what they said? “Oh, I got that waived.”

They got it waived. By whose authority? The degree requirements are pretty clear. You have to complete a foreign language through 202.

I e-mailed the President of the College, the Provost, as well as the Director of the Wilder School on April 16th and asked where there is authority to waive a clearly stated degree requirement (without mentioning any student’s name).

And I am still waiting on a response.

But, hey, at least it’s not only the big shots that get out of doing mandatory degree requirements.

Cross-posted at Virginia Virtucon.

Navy pilot stayed on disabled plane so the rest of the crew could bail out.

I heard about the plane crash a week or so ago and that they had called off a search and rescue attempt a few days later and now the full story has been revealed:

Had a lesser pilot been at the controls of Bluetail 601 last Wednesday, there might have been four memorial services this week instead of one.

But Lt. Miroslav “Steve” Zilberman was one of two pilots in the cockpit of the E-2C Hawkeye as it returned from a mission over Afghanistan, heading toward the aircraft carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower in the North Arabian Sea.

The Ukrainian-born junior officer had distinguished himself during three years with Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 121. He knew the plane – and its training manual – inside and out.

So after one engine lost oil pressure and then failed completely; after one propeller couldn’t be adjusted to balance the plane; after it was clear that there was no way to safely land, Zilberman ordered his crew to bail out.

He manually kept the Hawkeye stable as it plummeted toward the water, which allowed the three other men to escape.

Time ran out before he could follow.

Zilberman, 31, was declared dead three days later.

Twitter Updates for 2010-04-04

Twitter Updates for 2010-04-03

  • Anyone else think that the latest episode of #V was kinda anemic? #
  • My pet-peeve on the use of the English language today: "domestic violence advocates", really? Shouldn't there be an "anti-" in there? #
  • And the award for the worse nightmare of the night/day goes to the one where I needed to shoot multiple burglars but my weapon jammed. #
  • RT @Conservativa: Whoever ordered up today's weather in Richmond, VA – excellent work. Pls order more exactly like today, KTHXBAI. #
  • WTF? Since when did FEMA pay for people's remodeling or construction costs? #

Twitter Updates for 2010-04-02

Twitter Updates for 2010-04-01