Friday, October 06, 2006

Choose Your Examples Carefully

My friend Caroll wrote to The Detroit Free Press once, complaining that the paper was lumping the Pointes and Macomb (the next county north) in together, while the five Grosse Pointes are, in fact, in Wayne County. They paid no attention. Today, however, I was delighted to receive the Pointes/Macomb supplement and to read the article about the need for a four year college in Macomb County.

Currently Macomb Community College has a consortium arrangement with some four year institutions in the Detroit Metropolitan area, allowing students to complete a four-year degree by taking their last two years of coursework at the center in Macomb County, taught by faculty from the partner schools. In my previous life I worked with students who were transferring their credits to Wayne State, and I know there are some success stories in the arrangement.

Now I invite you to look at the photo which accompanies this article. It shows a class in “performance”. The young lady on the right is demonstrating how to “break up with a guy”. Sitting next to the grinning dumpee is an egg. An egg? Is this perhaps “Performance 101: training for embryonic NFL mascots?” And what are we to make of the blond in the Paris Hilton wig (or at least, I hope it’s a wig) sitting next to the egg?

Many of the taxpayers in Macomb County will cheerfully support measures to increase higher education opportunities in the area. Some need persuading. But surely a photo of a class in Multivariable Calculus or World Literature would be more likely to convince them of the value of a four-year degree than this glimpse into the world of dress-up and dating.

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