Pass/Fail: Dragons, Tupac, Hunger Games to appear in spring curriculum, Illinois lawmakers pass pension reform at state workers’ expense

By Danny Cozzi

Pass: Dragons, Tupac, Hunger Games to appear in spring curriculum

The College of Education has unveiled 15 intriguing classes that relate to pop culture topics, according to today’s article in the Northern Star.

Considering the fact that I spend a rather large portion of my downtime on the Internet, seeing classes revolve around the same things I see on Reddit and Imgur is pretty exciting.

The classes are meant to integrate education and culture, which to me always makes learning about something more interesting.

But if it were up to me, I’d add a few more classes to the curriculum. If my class schedule was left entirely up to me — which would be an absolutely horrible idea — I would fill it with classes on Led Zeppelin, Star Wars and vegetarian cooking.

Seeing as one class will feature playing Dungeons and Dragons, I’m hoping classes relating to Star Wars aren’t too far off.

Fail: Illinois lawmakers pass pension reform at state workers’ expense

Illinois legislators passed an extensive pension reform bill Tuesday with hopes to ease the state’s debt.

Unfortunately, I don’t think the reform they approved is going to be a stable solution. Unions, understandably, are up in arms about the state reducing, if not entirely skipping, some cost-of-living expenses and raising the retirement age to help curb the state’s debt.

I wonder how much better off state employees, like NIU professors, would be if Illinois had controlled itself better before it miraculously dug itself into $100 billion in pension debt.

Now, the thought of NIU potentially losing future teachers is a frightening reality. I mean, there’s not much of a point in working for a state that just threw its workers under the bus.

I understand Illinois needed to act, but slashing its employees’ benefits wasn’t the right call.