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Voice: More pettiness, vindictiveness by top brass at IVC

January 13, 2001

Several people concerned about matters at Imperial Valley College have asked me if I exaggerate the hostile environment that exists at IVC between the president and several of his top aides and the rest of the faculty and staff. The following is a short account of what can be expected from the powers that be:

Back in September, Professor Harold Richwine asked his department head if he could attend a one-day seminar in San Diego to upgrade information in Red Cross certification programs. The department head said, "Sure, but check with the dean of instruction, John Hunt." So Professor Richwine laid out the proposed program, he submitted the appropriate forms for travel reimbursement and it was approved in writing by both the dean of instruction and the department head. He was given an IVC credit card to purchase gas for a vehicle rented by IVC for the purpose of attending the seminar.

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After the seminar, Professor Richwine arrived back on campus and submitted his total expenditures to the business office of $81.06 and went about his business, until … about 10 days later he was told by the dean of instruction, long after the fact, that the seminar was now unauthorized and the school demanded reimbursement in the amount of $81.06. The dean of instruction said the IVC board did not and does not approve of attending such expensive "junkets," such as Red Cross certification programs, even though it had been approved in writing. Professor Richwine protested and questioned this decision but as he is a "man of honor" he paid up. Then Professor Richwine attended the December board meeting and informed them of the matter.

I happen to know the information that Professor Richwine brought back to campus from this disputed seminar will be presented to the entire IVC physical education staff in the new semester and I feel it's only correct that IVC should pay for it. If the school refuses to pay to send instructors into the rest of the world to discover what is going in academia, we are certainly in a sorry state of affairs and it can't get any better.

The board should deal with this pettiness that is thrust on them by their top administrators, who seem to allow personal vindictiveness to interfere with education. The board should ask itself if the information brought back to campus by Professor Richwine could save a life, is it worth $81.06?

HARRY WEISSMAN

El Centro

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