Generational Shockwaves and the Implications for Higher Education

Generational Shockwaves and the Implications for Higher Education

Edited by Donald E. Heller and Madeleine B. d’ Ambrosio

This volume, part of the TIAA-CREF Institute Series on Higher Education, is based on a national conference convened by the Institute in November 2007. The generational issues that were the focus of the conference raise both risks and opportunities with the potential to profoundly affect our cultural environment, both inside and outside academe.

Chapter 3: Generation X: Redefining the Norms of the Academy

Ronald G. Ehrenberg

Subjects: economics and finance, public sector economics, education, education policy, politics and public policy, education policy, social policy and sociology, ageing, education policy


3. Generation X: redefining the norms of the academy Ronald G. Ehrenberg INTRODUCTION The members of Generation X are the young faculty members of today and the immediate future. The panelists at this session of the conference were asked to discuss the effects of this generation on academic norms and institutional governance and the types of new models that may be emerging for academia as a result of them. More specifically, they were asked if the attitudes and loyalties of these young faculty members really do differ from that of the Baby Boom Generation, how their attitudes and behavior affect graduate programs, what academic institutions will need to do to attract the next generation of faculty members, and how they will influence governance in academia. And given the growing number of two-career families and single parent families, will changes in the tenure system take place? The panel, which it was my pleasure to moderate, consisted of four distinguished academic leaders. Linda Bunnell has been the Chancellor of the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point since 2004. Prior to assuming that position, she was a Senior Vice President at the College Board, the Chancellor of the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs for the Minnesota State System, and a consultant to higher education and non-profit organizations. Joan Girgus has been a Professor of Psychology at Princeton University for 30 years. She has served Princeton in a variety of administrative...

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