Yesterday, the Honolulu television station news consortium, Hawaii News Now, came out with a tantalizingly brief report that the University of Hawaii at Manoa chancellor, Dr. Tom Apple, is to be removed from office after only a couple of years into what is normally a five-year contract. This was followed by an online posting from the UHM student paper, Ka Leo, to the effect that the chancellor had ruffled the wrong feathers.
Whatever the case, as usual, the lawyers are now gearing up for a fight over how much he gets of the remaining funding for his incredibly lavish salary (close to half a million a year) – which is the equivalent of about seven or eight new assistant professors, if a complete hiring freeze were not in force at UHM because the state, in its wisdom, does not believe that a well-funded university is all that important.
This is striking news, at least to those of us who work at the face of the coal. The folks up at the head mining office may have already been aware that something was afoot but it does not seem to have been bruited about very widely amongst the rank and file.
As someone who, like most of Civil Beat’s readers, spends most of his time down in the pit digging away on the day-to-day job (in my case, it’s teaching, research, and service), I often find what goes