We just discovered this recent gem from the Times Higher Education. A certain Harvard professor is tired of
babysitting teaching those "post-pubescent children of notables" who can buy and sell him! Especially Jared Kushner, son of real estate developer Charles Kusher—also known as the boy who bought the New York Observer. Professor John H. Summers recalls him as a student—which was not that long ago, as Kushner is 27. The juicy bit? Kushner's Observer takeover resulted in a pay cut for Prof Summers, who did freelance reviews there.
In the first meeting of my first seminar of my first year, Kushner's son Jared entered my classroom and promptly took the seat across from mine, sharing the room, so to speak. I was drawing an annual salary of $15,500 (£7,700) and borrowing the remainder for survival in Cambridge, in order that he might be given the best possible education. Jared later purchased The New York Observer for $10 million, part of which he made buying and selling real estate while also attending my seminar. As publisher, one of his first moves was to reduce pay for the Observer's stable of book reviewers. I had been writing reviews for the Observer in an effort to pay my debts.
The final punch, at the end of the essay: "When intellectuals act as clerks and students act as clients, how do college teachers differ from corporate accountants? ...the sedulous banality of the rich degrades teaching into a service-class preoccupation whose chief duty is preparing clients for monied careers."
We hear the kids at state schools are much nicer—and in no position to give your freelancing job a pay cut so soon after they graduate.
[Photo: Nicholas Roberts/NYT]