corporate coursework

academica

A Hunter College course was sponsored by the IACC (International Anti-Counterfeiting Commission)–“world’s largest non-profit organization devoted solely to protecting intellectual property and deterring counterfeiting”–wherein students were assigned to design a guerrilla marketing campaign against, you guessed it, counterfeit products. One of the things they did was a blog, which was written by a fictional ‘Heidi Cee.’

Some question why a for-credit college class at a public university should be doing, in effect, discount marketing work for an industry group. Some wonder about a college using some students to fool other students. Others are concerned about the circumstances of the course itself. It was created without any curricular review. The professor who taught it says that he was pressured to do so even though he has no expertise in advertising or public relations (he teaches computer graphics) and had ethical qualms about the course.

Further, the professor — and other professors who have investigated the circumstances of the course — maintain that the professor was required to teach only one side of the issue, had to accept industry officials watching him teach, and had little clout to fight back since he didn’t (and still doesn’t) have tenure.

Read more here.

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