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International Journal of Human Nutrition and

Functional Medicine

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ISSN 2378-4881

http://intjhumnutrfunctmed.org/

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Citation: Vasquez A. Ending the Exploitation of Experts Begins with Educating Them about Employment, Curbing Enthusiasm to Preserve

Enthusiasm.

Int J Hum Nutr Funct Med

2016; epub in press

International Journal of Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine

www.ICHNFM.ORG

Perspective, Opinion, Editorial

• Education • Academia • Wage Theft • Corruption

Ending the Exploitation of Experts Begins with Educating Them about

Employment, Curbing Enthusiasm to Preserve Enthusiasm

Alex Vasquez DC ND DO FACN

My own paths toward and perspectives on Education

My passion for teaching and education began "formally"

when I was about 9 years of age, sitting on the floor of Ms

Hall's 4th grade classroom; from that vantage as I sat

somewhat near my best friend Robert, I saw the destructive

power of bad teaching and discrimination, and from that day

I started analyzing teachers, teaching methods, educational

and social structures, and ways to convey knowledge and

inspire students. Additionally inspired by my teacher of

English and Literature in my final years at Riverside Military

Academy, I began college with the plan of eventually

teaching "something—most likely English and Literature"

because I appreciated and valued teaching, proper

grammatical structure, and nuanced use of language; I later

developed and interconnected my interests in teaching,

writing, language, physiology, medicine, and nutrition to

complete three doctorate degrees in the health sciences and

publish more than 120 articles, letters, rebuttals,

monographs, and books on a wide range of topics, with those

publications ranging from dense 1-page Letters and

Responses to published research up to single-author

textbooks of more than 1,180 pages. I have taught at various

colleges and universities at the undergraduate,

graduate/Masters, and Doctorate levels and have lectured

internationally for post-graduate medical education. I see

teaching not simply as effective transferal of information,

but also as a means to interconnect and inspire generations

of people, notably in a reciprocal manner. At its best,

teaching and learning are activities that reflect and support

love for life itself.

Oh, the stories I could tell you about the innards of

Academia, “nonprofits”, and “accredited” schools

I would be happiest to tell you that Academics and

Administrators are vanguards of intellectual integrity,

support for fellow Professors, and that these peoples' highest

commitment is to truth and reality itself, and secondarily to

setting ablaze the passions of the hearts and minds of those

they teach, lead, and supervise; I'd be the first to spin around

in flower fields like a professorial version of Julie Andrews

singing a rhythmical rendition of "

The Hills are Alive…with

the…Passions of Education and Intellectual Integrity

." But

a pollyannic representation of my observations would be a

misrepresentation of the realities I have seen and

experienced. I have seen university presidents lie to their

students, expel experts for the sake of maintaining their own

petty powers and preferences, and I have seen entire

academic administrations lie (misrepresent) in unison to

their boards of trustees and their accreditation commissions.

I have seen stand-alone academic programs make millions

of dollars in profit, while its administrators refuse to pay a

living wage to doctorate-level infrastructure and while

allowing themselves 6-week European vacations during

major institutional initiatives. I have seen administrators lie

to accreditors and allow students to cheat their way through

graduate programs (by bypassing faulty examination

software in online programs), and I have seen accreditors

turn a blind eye to obvious university corruption, made

worse when the accreditation commission is infiltrated by

university administrators—thus did “accreditation” come to

lose its value. I have seen “nonprofit educational

institutions” underpay their faculty, plagiarize from their

faculty, resell the work of other professionals without notice

or compensation, and then pay their upper administrators in

excess of US$160,000 for less than part-time work—thus

did “nonprofit organization” come to lose its value. I have

seen schools blackmail excellent professors and leaders in

education with gag orders, legal threats, and financial

bribery (range US$25,000 up to $250,000) to buy their

silence about institutional corruption. I have corresponded

with employment attorneys, State Attorneys General, and

US Department of Education, most of whom shrugged their

shoulders and said, “That’s the way it is in academia.” Sorry

if I am the first to tell you the news, but much of academia

is a battlefield of politics and incompetence shrouded by

glossy brochures, colorful catalogs, and manicured campus

landscapes. Meanwhile, some passionate and talented –

occasionally even gifted– professors endure all that they can

while trying to teach and inspire the next generation of