While I give Robert Koons full marks for the title of his essay on what ails American univerisities, his essay itself reminds me of the great cornetist Herbert L. Clarke's comment about trumpets. The trumpet, Clarke complained some hundred years ago, is "the nearest thing to the devil in music." Unlike the cornet, the trumpet was used in jazz--and you know what kinds of trouble kids get into when they listen to jazz!
You should read Koons' essay for yourself, but to sum up his complaint: American higher education has lost its way. It used to offer a solid liberal arts education. Under the baleful influence of Bacon and Rousseau (of all people!), our liberal arts tradition has degraded into a technocratic training adulterated by a sentimentalist, relativistic, nihilistic muddle of politically correct, intellecutually bankrupt hogwash masquerading as the humanities. Electives displaced core curricula. Pornography-addicted party animals displaced hardworking, intellectually motivated students. Navel-gazing researchers displaced committed humanistic teachers, churning out esoteric nonsense and teaching courses in intellectually and morally lightweight trivia, rather than the intellectually edifying trivium.
There's a lot to chew on in Koons' essay, but I want to focus on just one issue, since it's the issue most directly relevant to early career philosophers: What role should the philosophical canon play in your teaching? Should you be teaching classic texts in (some or all of) your classes? If you do teach historical texts, should you make an effort to include authors other than dead white men, even if that means spending less time on the "traditional" canon? Are there classical or early modern texts that every well-educated undergraduate philosophy major should read? Which ones? If you do teach the canon, do you assign (translations of) the original texts? Jonathan Bennett's "translations?" Secondary sources? These are questions you might mull over in designing your next syllabus or preparing for job interviews.
My own views on these questions are still evolving. I think the canon is important. I think that a philosophy major, if she has studied ethics beyond the introductory level, should have read at least some Mill, some Kant, and some Aristotle by the time she graduates. Some Plato, Hume, and Hobbes would be good, too. I'd also add Confucius to that list, although he's not in the Western canon. But in its current incarnation, my upper level ethics course only touches on each of these figures briefly. In an earlier incarnation, we worked through all of the Groundwork, all of Utilitarianism, most of the Nicomachean Ethics, and a chunk of the Analects. I tried to balance the historical content with the important concepts and distinctions of ethical and metaethical theory, but I couldn't make it work, and so I refocused the course on contemporary philosophy. And this reveals, I think, one of my fundamental disagreements with Koons: He seems to think that the best way to grok the most important ideas that anyone has ever had is to read the canon. I don't.