3/19/2013 update: Law School had been planning on banking 45% of CnC revenue as profit
Law Professor Q: The particular question that interests me the most concerns the division of revenue from CNC courses. How much of this revenue goes to CNC/CRES/ADR, and how much goes to the law school’s general coffers? I know that the gross revenue per student for a four-credit course is $600. I’m interested to know how much of the $600 goes to CNC/CRES/ADR, and how much of the $600 goes to the law school’s general coffers.
Answer of sorts: The CNC budget was created at the same time and following the same process as the JD program budget. Revenue projections are made based on student enrollment, grants, gifts or other fundraising events. The CNC program requests an expense budget to meet their program needs. (These expenses do not roll up to a larger ADR center budget. The ADR Center has a separate budget index for their program expenses.) As a management tool, CNC program expenses can not exceed program revenues. However any surplus goes to the law school total budget. This has varied greatly over the past three years. In my first year, most of CNC was funded through the CNC foundation funds. In 2012, the program was just better than break–even. This year, there were surplus revenue dollars remaining after all program expenses that were targeted to law school general fund. In addition, the CNC program is allocated their share of the 35% tax base and a 15% overhead assessment for law school resources. In summary, in AY2013/14 over 45% of CNC revenues were budgeted to law school general fund to cover tax, admin support and surplus; 55% was budgeted for direct support the CNC program; 0% was budgeted to support any other ADR activities. But I don’t think you can use these numbers looking forward. The program needs and admin support needs may vary greatly depending on the outcome of the program decisions. We will start from bottoms up this year.
Associate Dean, Finance & Operations
University of Oregon School of Law
3/18/2013 update: Not so fast, it seems. See bottom for an email from the LCB administration. Apparently their faculty was a little surprised to read about the program transition on UO Matters, rather than being consulted first by their own dean, Kees de Kluyver. The meat:
LCB is making no commitment to additional courses and any proposals generated will be run through a normal course approval process. Should any new courses be approved, staffing for those courses will follow our regular search process.
3/15/2013: The fallout from my post on the law school’s Conflict not Conflict courses last month is slowly coming clear. As I explain below, the consequences are very likely going to be borne by one of the CnC instructors (who has a UO philosophy PhD). He may lose his job over it. This is not right. I want to apologize to him for my role in this outcome and encourage people in the law and business schools to do the right thing by him.
On Thursday several law school faculty sent me Moffitt’s official announcement and self-serving email to the faculty, posted below. The background? Moffitt raked in the cash from the CnC courses, and bragged about it to the NYT
At the University of Oregon, Michael Moffitt, the law school’s dean, has started clinics on nonprofit groups, environmental policy and probate mediation. He has also set up law courses for students in other parts of the university, which brings revenue to the law school.
“The problem is that we have been selling only one product,” Mr. Moffitt said. “But if you are getting a business degree, you need to know about contract law. City planners need to know about land-use law. So we at Oregon are educating not just J.D. students.
“Demand is through the roof,” he added. “I feel like I am living a business school case study.”
Moffitt apparently still hasn’t come clean to NYT reporter Ethan Bronner about the fact that most of the profits – about $200,000 a year – came from the CnC courses. The combination of Moffitt’s NYT quotes and my post raised a lot of questions with law school faculty and alumni. FWIW, here’s my current take on the situation, informed by a report on the CnC program that was passed to me along with the Moffitt email, and which I hope will eventually be public:
1) Courses on the philosophy and social implications of sports should be taught in universities. Given UO’s history, what better place than UO? We should do this, and we should do it well.
2) My original post implied that these CnC courses were guts for the “student-athletes”. This is not true. The courses have tough grading curves, if anything tougher than average for UO courses. And I don’t see any indication that they were particularly popular with the jocks.
3) I think lots of people read the Football and Conflict exam that I posted and thought the course, taught by an instructor with a UO philosophy PhD, was an apologia for athletics. Having seen the report, I can say this is not true – this course was in fact a skeptical inquiry into the role of sports in life and society. The same seems to be true of the rest of the CnC program.
4) The real problem is not that UO taught these courses, it’s that the law school treated the program as a cash cow. The courses were set up to maximize short-term revenue. Too many courses with overlapping material. No prereqs for upper division courses. Masters courses taught by adjuncts that were already teaching too many courses. Moffitt took the money, rather than invest the profits back in improving the program.
What’s going to happen now? Moffitt’s email explains that the CnC program is going to be taken over by the business school’s Warsaw Sports Marketing Program
. Kilkenny’s endowment will presumably go there too – where it probably should have been in the first place. But the law school will retain “ownership” of the CnC program and courses. Very weird. Moffitt still won’t take responsibility, just the profits?
So, who *is* going to take the fall for all this? Obviously not Michael Moffitt. And CnC Director, Josh Gordon will move to the LCB. But the fate of the other CnC instructor is still unclear:
3/15/2013 email from Moffitt:
From: firstname.lastname@example.orgTo: email@example.comSubject: law-fac-staff: Josh Gordon Transition to Warsaw Sports Marketing Center
Date: Fri, 15 Mar 2013 00:09:39 +0000
Dear Faculty & Staff,
Below please find a statement that Lundquist College of Business Dean Kees de Kluyver and I will be issuing jointly later this evening. The headline is that Josh Gordon will be moving to the business school starting in the Spring term to work with the Warsaw Sports Management Center. The law school will retain “ownership” of the CNC program and the affiliated courses. We already had time scheduled into the faculty meeting tomorrow to talk about the CNC program and about next steps. I look forward to seeing you then.
Philip H. Knight Dean
University of Oregon School of Law
– – – – –
Statement from Kees de Kluyver & Michael Moffitt
The study of sports and society is an emergent academic field concerned with the institutions, politics, economies, and communities within and around sports culture. This summer, the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center at the Lundquist College of Business will be exploring new curricular possibilities around sports and society to complement its existing sports business concentrations. In support of this project, Josh Gordon will be reassigned to work with Paul Swangard and the Warsaw faculty, effective Spring 2013. The hope of both the Law and Business Schools is to better serve Oregon’s students and academic mission through the development of rigorous courses supported by clear pedagogical objectives. As with any curriculum, all curricular proposals emerging from this work will be reviewed using normal faculty governance procedures, including the undergraduate program committee of the Business School and the University’s undergraduate committee on courses.
3/18/2013 email from LCB:
Dear LCB Faculty and Staff,
In the absence of Dean de Kluyver who is travelling, I wanted to provide some additional context to the announcement that is being circulated by the Law School below. Our intent in working with the Law School is to determine if we might be able to serve the student demand that existed in the cancelled courses (the second largest population of which were PBA students). Josh Gordon will remain under contract and paid by the Law School during this period and there have been no promises made beyond the existing contract term. LCB is making no commitment to additional courses and any proposals generated will be run through a normal course approval process. Should any new courses be approved, staffing for those courses will follow our regular search process.
Statement from Kees de Kluyver & Michael Moffitt [as above]
David M. Boush
Associate Dean for Administration
Marketing Department Head
Gerald B. Bashaw Professor of Business