Clarence G. Newsome is leaving the presidency of Shaw University as the institution faces a growing deficit, The Raleigh News & Observer reported. The historically black college faces a debt of about $20 million. In December, more than 100 students held a protest in Newsome's office over dormitory conditions, the newspaper reported, including moldy bathrooms, toilets that don't work and overcrowding. Supporters have vowed to raise money to help the institution, and all 40 members of the college's board have agreed to donate at least $50,000 each.
Higher Education Quick Takes
Epsilen, the online education company of The New York TImes, is today naming Jim Bowler as chief executive officer. Bowler joined Epsilen in January as an executive consultant working with the company’s board of directors. Prior to joining Epsilen, he was chief executive officer and president of two online entities: Classroom Connect and Harcourt Connected Learning. He has served as chief executive officer of Kids123 and senior vice president of marketing for Computer Curriculum Corporation, a division of Pearson Education. Epsilen offers professors tools to post portfolios , communicate with colleagues or students, and to create materials -- many drawing from the Times achives -- for classroom use.
Many low-income students who could benefit from higher education don't apply to college because they don't know they could get financial assistance or they are intimidated by the process, says a new report, "Promoting Economic Mobility by Increasing Postsecondary Education," released Tuesday by the Pew Charitable Trusts. The report argues that simplifying the aid application process is crucial if more disadvantaged students are ever to have a shot at college.
Community colleges need better measures of student learning, measures that yield more information than tests, according to a study issued Tuesday by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The report is based on three years of research, supported by Carnegie and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, on the teaching of basic math and English skills at 11 California community colleges. The research explored a wide variety of assessment techniques. Techniques studied included traditional tests and also "think aloud protocols" (audio and video records of students talking about their thought process while trying to read texts or solve problems), focus groups and surveys.
Jack McDonald, athletics director at Quinnipiac University, on Tuesday admitted in court that some men's coaches rigged rosters to try to make the institution look better on gender equity than it really was, The Connecticut Post reported. The testimony came in a suit in which women's team members charge the university with gender bias violations, and the specific allegation was made earlier in the trial, by a women's coach. McDonald admitted that rosters were rigged as the coach said they were -- with men's coaches dropping some men from their squads a few days before statistics were reported, and then adding the men back a few days after the reports were filed. The reports thus didn't reflect the full range of athletic opportunities available to male students, and the gap between those opportunities available for male and female students. While McDonald admitted that the manipulation took place, he said that the university never tolerated the practice and has addressed it. "Nobody told coaches that, 'This is how you get around it guys,' " the Post quoted him as testifying.
The National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division I Committee on Infractions banned the men's tennis team at the University of South Alabama from postseason competition next year in response to several major violations of association rules. The infractions panel found that the university's former coach had engaged in unethical conduct by providing more than $12,000 in impermissible financial aid to international athletes, giving cash to another player for a visa, and refusing to cooperate with NCAA investigators. The NCAA also concluded that the university had failed to monitor the conduct of the tennis program. South Alabama faced tougher penalties than it might have otherwise because this was its second major infractions case this decade; in addition to the postseason ban, it must vacate all games in which the ineligible athletes participated.
Syracuse University's law school, responding to reports that students were using bathroom breaks during final exams to cheat, has decided to limit students to one restroom visit per exam, The Syracuse Post-Standard reported. Exams can last up to four hours. Some students were reportedly using bathroom breaks to use their cell phones to send and receive text messages. The newspaper said that students who present documentation of medical conditions requiring more frequent bathroom visits will be exempted from the new rules.
The District of Columbia agency that handles financial aid requests has just sent detailed information about 2,400 aid applicants to 1,250 of those applicants, The Washington Post reported. The office sent an e-mail to 1,250 applicants and accidentally attached a spreadsheet with 2,400 applicants' names, e-mail and home addresses, Social Security numbers, phone numbers and dates of birth. The agency has since asked all of those who received the spreadsheet to destroy it. Further, it sent an apology to the students whose information was shared, and is offering one-year subscriptions to a credit-monitoring service so that they can try to prevent identity theft.
New Jersey has been spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on a special Rutgers University appropriation that supported a small nonprofit group to teach school children how to grow food in space, The Star-Ledger reported. Given that space agriculture hasn't exactly taken off, the revelation was sure to be controversial, but the newspaper found that this appropriation featured a peculiat twist on the concept of the no-show job. Much of the money has been going to pay the salaries of two people -- one of whom has been dead for two years. The newspaper first reported the unusual appropriation Monday morning, and by the end of the day legislators were vowing to kill the program.
The volleyball coach at Quinnipiac University testified Monday that the institution has distorted athletic rosters as a means of hiding violations of gender equity laws, The Hartford Courant reported. According to the testimony, in a case in which team members are trying to prevent the university from eliminating the volleyball team, the university drops some male athletes from team rosters just before the season starts, reports on the total numbers of male and female athletes while those men are not counted, and then adds the men back. The university's athletic director declined to comment on the allegations.