WORDS ARE PLENTIFUL, DEEDS ARE PRECIOUS. Northern Illinois University begins a national search for a new provost. President John Peters has ambitions.
“Our next provost must rise to the challenge of creating a great intellectual environment, enhancing the student experience, driving an aggressive research agenda, expanding our graduate programs, creating sustainable scholarly and creative initiatives, encouraging active engagement in our region and continuing our efforts to internationalize the campus.”
High sounding words, to be sure, but follow the money. First comes the new alumni relations center. Next comes the study hall and weight room upstairs from the locker room. Today comes a field trip.

Administrators have set up transportation to the NIU football team’s first MAC Championship game at 6:30 p.m. CDT Thursday at Ford Field in Detroit.

The first 300 students who buy a $5 ticket will receive free round-trip bus transportation, a box lunch and a T-shirt commemorating NIU’s MAC West Division title.

Yes, you read that right. The prize for winning the Wednesday afternoon game rescheduled for TV from the Tuesday evening game is an opportunity to play in a Thursday evening game. Because Friday is the last day of classes, a Saturday game would technically be during exam week, not permitted. And there are prizes for those who stick around for those Thursday summary classes.
If the Huskies win, a post-game celebration will be held in the Holmes Student Center’s Regency Room until midnight. The event will feature a disc jockey, snacks and beverages. The first 300 students to arrive at the event will receive a free T-shirt. For more information about tickets and the postgame celebration, call the Office of Student Involvement and Leadership Development.
(I wasn't aware we had such an office. Perhaps that falls under the rubric of "enhancing the student experience.")

Anybody in headquarters ever hear of an opportunity cost?

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