Join us for a colloquium with Laura Hamilton, professor and chair of sociology at the University of California, Merced.
Dr. Hamilton will use case studies of “new universities” to examine how austerity is produced and administered in higher education and to explore its racial consequences.
New universities are public research universities, ranked in the nation’s top 200, that serve large populations of racially and socioeconomically marginalized students. These schools face intense financial pressures, as they are more deeply reliant on state support and less able to extract market-based funds (e.g., from donors, alumni, non-resident families, and corporations) than their peers.
This event is sponsored by the Department of Sociology at UW-Madison and cosponsored by the Wisconsin Center for the Advancement of Postsecondary Education (WISCAPE) and the Wisconsin Center for Education Research (WCER). Funding is provided by the Hilldale Lecture Fund.
Hamilton argues that the choices of new university administrators are not just a logical response to material conditions, but instead reflect a pervasive culture of austerity. She focuses on four key austerity practices -- get big, cut costs, be market smart, and think (inter)nationally. These practices tend to undercut the experiences of historically marginalized students and may even be counterproductive to organizational survival and prestige production. Consequently, leaders may inadvertently reinforce the state austerity to which they must respond.
A reception will follow Dr. Hamilton's talk. This event is free and open to the public!