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Interview with Tamara Fuller of Founders College

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Here's a recent article about Founder's College. It say that they had hoped for 140 students in their first year, but only have 10 (plus two online students) because of the short recruiting season this year. They have other potential sources of income, as a vacation site. The article also says: "Hull--who denied that Founders would be an objectivist school--has dropped out of the school's daily operations and is not listed on its Web site."

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Here's a recent article about Founder's College. It say that they had hoped for 140 students in their first year, but only have 10 (plus two online students) because of the short recruiting season this year. They have other potential sources of income, as a vacation site. The article also says: "Hull--who denied that Founders would be an objectivist school--has dropped out of the school's daily operations and is not listed on its Web site."

This is really depressing news. I wonder what this means for the college's short-term survival.

Does anybody know why Gary Hull is now out of the picture?

Edited by DarkWaters
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This is really depressing news. I wonder what this means for the college's short-term survival.

I don't agree that the startup of a new college with the best liberal arts curriculum ever developed is depressing news, no matter the initial enrollment figures.

For one thing, you have to keep in mind just what a heroic accomplishment it has been just to get this far. There have been so many hurdles overcome already that in many regards, it's all downhill from here!

You can also take heart by imagining the incredible product that the initial batch of students is going to get as a reward for taking that first, bold step. If the reported enrollment numbers are correct, then the student-teacher ratio is almost 1-1! These early students--and what a great group they must be!--will have an unprecedented opportunity to learn under expert tutelage.

In this environment, the teachers will also have an unprecedented opportunity--to focus on teaching and curriculum development, as per the college's philosophy. In addition, they will be able to focus their entrepreneurial energy on development, which means the quality of the product will rise even more precipitously, and they will be able to draw more and better clients in the future.

Knowing what I know about the quality of the people involved and the quality of the product, and knowing what I have been privy to concerning the school's business plans, I can confidently predict that the school will succeed.

Just think of Howard Roark in his tiny office, starting out on his own, with a few, dedicated clients. Then think of him in the final scene, at the top of a skyscraper. Difficult beginnings are par for the course.

So get fired up!

Sincerely,

Scott Powell

www.PowellHistory.com

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  • 4 months later...
According to this article from a local newspaper, Founder's College appears to be in real trouble. The picture painted is of a company that over-promised and under-delivered.

I did not realize Eric Daniels was involved in this project, too, but also left before the school opened. Now they are down to five students! That is really disappointing. I think the biggest obstacle to acquiring more attendance is accreditation. Nobody wants to go to a school that is not even recognized as being at least the same standard as the rest of the schools in the nation.

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Just think of Howard Roark in his tiny office, starting out on his own, with a few, dedicated clients. Then think of him in the final scene, at the top of a skyscraper. Difficult beginnings are par for the course.

So get fired up!

Sincerely,

Scott Powell

www.PowellHistory.com

I realize the post I'm quoting above was written several months ago. But in light of the latest news about Founders, it's important to revisit the comparison. Here's something I wrote more than a year ago about Founders:

Of course, one might wonder, if everyone needs to have established a track record before they're given a chance, nothing innovative will ever be created. Could (Founders) be the Howard Roark of higher education? Well, Roark didn't start out by talking about the revolution he would ignite. Mainly, he showed us his drawings. He offered substance, not hype--evidence of his competence, not marketing rhetoric. It would be one thing if Founders were renting out a few rooms in an office suite somewhere, and offering us a quality education for a bargain price (which, I think, could actually be done). But it is quite another thing to purchase a $12 million campus, with private rooms and gourmet meals, and charge students $28,000 in tuition.

http://www.noumenalself.com/archives/2006/...s_colleg_1.html

From day one, this project has been driven by hype, not rational evidence. The news story details a chain of bizarre broken promises. One student likes horses? We'll build her a stable! You've got a cafe for sale? We'll build a library out of it!

I feel sorry for the students. I don't feel so sorry for the citizens of South Boston. They deluded themselves into being taken for a ride. As if by the Springfield Monorail:

Lyle Lanley: Well, sir, there's nothing on earth

Like a genuine,

Bona fide,

Electrified,

Six-car

Monorail!

What'd I say?

Ned Flanders: Monorail!

...

Miss Hoover: I hear those things are awfully loud...

Lyle Lanley: It glides as softly as a cloud.

Apu: Is there a chance the track could bend?

Lyle Lanley: Not on your life, my Hindu friend.

Barney: What about us brain-dead slobs?

Lyle Lanley: You'll be given cushy jobs.

Abe: Were you sent here by the devil?

Lyle Lanley: No, good sir, I'm on the level.

...

Marge: But Main Street's still all cracked and broken...

Bart: Sorry, Mom, the mob has spoken!

http://www.leoslyrics.com/listlyrics.php?id=67605

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