FC Too: First women's basketball recruit. For Class of 2018!! Academic Council to discuss homeless threat to libraries, hear Brodhead on Kunshan

If you did not read Tuesday's Special Report on Duke in Kunshan, please scroll down.

✔✔✔Making one of the rare appearances on campus where Dukies -- in this case elected faculty representatives -- can ask him questions, President Brodhead goes before the Academic Council Thursday afternoon.

Subject Kunshan.

The possibility that Brodhead will be embarrassed is high.

✔Faculty members might ask him about the annual losses this China venture faces and why he has has been offering deceptive figures to the Council.

In November Global Vice President Jones estimated Duke would be responsible for $1 million a year. Earlier this year, Brodhead upped the ante to $1.5 to $2 million a year. And Executive Vice President Trask upped it to $2.4 million, explaining Brodhead's secret authority to spend 20 percent more without going back to the Trustees.

Since the last Academic Council meeting, FC has revealed confidential Trustee briefing documents showing this is only part of the story -- and the Chronicle has gotten Peter the Provost to admit Brodhead was only talking about the university's "general funds."

That is, not counting the Enron-like shuffle of almost as much in Fuqua money.

Or twice as much in gifts he hopes for.

Or almost as much by trying to tuck some Durham costs into Kunshan's operations, if our partners let us get away with this trick and if they don't negate our move by trying to same crap themselves.

Trustee numbers: Duke is heading toward a loss of at least $100 million, more probably $150 million in the first decade.

✔Then the questioning might move to focus on our new partner in Kunshan, Wuhan University. Desperate for a new deal after a Shanghai university backed out at the last minute, facing a deadline set by the Chinese government, Jones told the Council he had three candidates. By process of elimination, FC determined Wuhan was the university that Jones described as "weak."

Mr. Brodhead, do you confirm that?

✔Then we have Dean Sheppard of Fuqua, eschewing the backwater of Kunshan and insisting the business school's premier degree programs "won't work" in Kunshan, but have to be in the business district of Shanghai. Another FC exclusive revelation.

Mr. Brodhead, who has made a career trying to convince us that Kunshan is really Shanghai, should address that. And whether we are being forthright with the city of Kunshan about the competing Shanghai campus.

And also since these two cities are next to each other in Brodhead's assertions, tell us, sir, why our basketball team on its summertime trip to China will be moving to hotels in each city as if they were far apart.

✔Lastly, we have the issue of whether the faculty and trustees should have their own staff and consultants to develop financial figures -- or just to nod in assent and go ahead and take the administration's rather pie-in-the-sky numbers for income.

Luckily, FC will not be at this meeting to ask questions. But faculty, you have an obligation to do so!

✔✔✔ The Academic Council will also take up the threat of Durham's homeless to the safety and security of Duke's libraries. Oh, the official agenda doesn't put it that way, but this is what is afoot when two library officials are scheduled to discuss "issues with open access." FC had an exclusive report February 15 after a tip from a Loyal Reader.


✔✔✔ The women's basketball team has its first recruit for the Class of 2018. Yes that's right, Class of 2018. Erin Mathias, 15-year-old 9th grader at Fox Chapel High School near Pittsburgh, has verbally committed, the 6 foot 3 inch center forward landing a full scholarship. She's good for a double double in most of her games. And averages 2.6 blocks per game. In one game she had 31 rebounds!

Several schools had written her. Pitt had pursued her. But Duke won out. All this is verbal, she can sign a letter of intent in November of her senior year. "I've always loved Duke and have always been a big Duke fan," she said.

Ron Mumbray, Mathias' AAU coach. "When I first saw Erin, when she was 11, she came into the gym wearing a Duke hoodie. It's amazing how from the time I first saw her until now, she has a scholarship offer from Duke. There is a lot of skill there."

Arizona ticket sales. How hot is a ticket to the Duke game? Meaning of course the men's team in the NCAA's. 424 miles to travel to Anaheim. The latest we have is that the University of Arizona sold 1,000 of its allotment of tickets on Monday, leaving 250 for Tuesday sales and 250 for the team.

✔So what's the talk of the campus at Arizona? The Daily Wildcat tells about a campus debate over a new state law that prohibits courses advocating ethnic solidarity, in any school getting state money.

The law states that students should be taught to treat and value each other as individuals and not to resent other races or classes of people. Both former state attorney general Thomas Horne and lawyer Richard Martinez, lawyer for 11 teachers challenging the law, called the other's argument racist and both spoke on how either support or opposition toward the bill has created bullying and intimidation.

"Ethnic solidarity is a racist concept," Horn said. "If you tell me that someone is Hispanic, that is irrelevant. I want to know about their character."

✔also in the Wildcat: "Teammates joke that forward Derrick Williams leaves games with 10 seconds to go, runs into some basketball version of a telephone booth and puts on his Superman jersey."

The Wildcat's sports section on Monday led with NCAA women's swimming, 4th story on March Madness. Only columnist talked about baseball.

Video spoofing frat life by Pi Kappa Phi pledge on Tucson campus goes viral.


RESEARCH -- for this I pay taxes. A professor and his graduate students (I shall leave them nameless though FC knows) with National Science Foundation money (part of the Obama job stimulus package) have figured out, the closer to the basketball game, the more fans will pay for a NCAA playoff ticket!!!! Except when you get real close and there are still tickets, though you cannot be sure of getting in, the price may decline. To be fair, and FC is fair, this is part of the research into the complexities of markets for perishable goods.

✔ You are reading Fact Checker Too, part of our expansion plans. The Deputy Fact Checkers are experimenting with frequent posts of shorter items -- in addition to our traditional in-depth essays. Tell us what you think.


NAN KEOHANE AT PRINCETON -- Former Duke President Nan Keohane is now teaching and researching at Princeton, where the president, Shirley Tilghman, got her to reprise her campus examination of the status of women.

And the report of the Keohane committee is in: when Princeton woke up and admitted its first women in 1969, they moved into high profile leadership roles in campus organizations, things like student government, the campus newspaper, the eating clubs.

No more. Keohane and committee find women work hard in student organizations but eschew the highest profile executive positions.

From the Chronicle of Higher Education:

The report says women tend to undersell themselves, and in some cases might be explicitly discouraged from seeking elective office. Men, on the other hand, tend to assert themselves with more confidence, even when that confidence is not necessarily justified.

“Men tend to speak up more quickly than women, to raise their hands and express their thoughts even before they are fully formulated,” the committee writes, “whereas women may take a bit more time to shape their comments and be more reticent about speaking up” -- even though “women are outpacing men on our campus in academic achievement, except at the very highest level.”

RESEARCH - you could have fooled me. Here's Fuqua's sixth annual survey of trends in off-shoring of American jobs. Most companies can't find the skilled workers they want in the USA, so they look overseas. It has very little to do with saving a buck. Hmmm.

But if they were driven by profits, surprise, more and more companies report they were not finding the efficiency they were seeking off-shore.

I have no idea about surveys and trends. All I know is I had to call up to question one of my credit card bills. The guy on the line said "Thank you for calling Mah-cheese." I thought I had the wrong number. No, when I read out the phone number, the man who took on the name Gary for his Phillipines call-center job confirmed. I had dialed right. Where did I reach?? "Mah-cheese." It took a moment, then I discovered I always pronounce it Macy's.