Higher Education Quick Takes

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Wednesday, November 18, 2009 - 3:00am

George Washington University has become the first college to offer athletic scholarships for squash, The Washington Post reported. The university is among 11 Division I institutions that play squash at the varsity level.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009 - 3:00am

United Students Against Sweatshops has achieved its largest victory to date with the news that Russell Athletic will rehire 1,200 workers in Honduras who will regain jobs they lost after their factory unionized, The New York Times reported. Using pledges made by various universities to demand that companies that produce clothing with their logos meet basic standards for respecting worker rights, the student group had been able to get many of those institutions to suspend or end licensing deals with Russell.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009 - 3:00am

Elgin Community College and Harper College are trying to save America's young people from becoming zombies. That's the message of a new online animated campaign run by the two Illinois community colleges. The video urges students not to be "mindless followers of the traditional college-search mindset" and to consider the low-cost alternative community colleges provide. The video shows those who borrow to attend expensive four-year institutions facing "a lifetime of mindless, brain-consuming misery" as zombies.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009 - 3:00am

Sen. Charles Grassley, an Iowa Republican who is a leading critic of conflicts of interest in biomedical research, is focusing on the issue of journal ghostwriting. The New York Times reported that he has written to 10 medical schools, asking about whether they have policies that deal with issues raised by pharmaceutical companies ghostwriting articles that appear under the names of university researchers.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009 - 3:00am

Continuing a trend in which nonprofit disciplinary societies are turning to commercial publishers, the American Geographical Society and Wiley-Blackwell on Tuesday announced that Wiley would start publishing two journals that have been managed directly by the society until now. The journals are Geographical Review and FOCUS on Geography. The Review has been published by the society since 1856.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009 - 3:00am

David Pelham, who became president of Cuesta College in March of 2008, has quit his position at the California community college, The San Luis Obispo Tribune News reported. While the outgoing president is taking a job in the United Arab Emirates, an e-mail he sent out suggested that he believes there are serious problems at the college. He wrote that those at the college need to learn to "make decisions in a manner that is inclusive but faster," "disagree on issues without undermining the credibility of those with whom we disagree" and "develop a collective understanding that how things have been done in the past may not fit our present circumstances."

Tuesday, November 17, 2009 - 3:00am

Thomas Edison State College is using a new federal grant to develop a series of distance education courses for which all materials are provided on flash drives. The idea is that while a student would need to connect to the Internet to submit materials to an instructor, the curriculum could be carried out offline.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009 - 3:00am

The union representing part-time faculty members at Montgomery College, a community college in Maryland, announced Monday that it had reached a tentative deal with the college on a first contract. Details are not being released pending final approval by the union's members and the college's trustees. But a statement from the union said that the deal would include a "modest" salary increase, higher limits on course loads for part timers, and measures that would improve job security. The contract would also create committees "to review, and formulate recommendations for addressing, pay inequity between full-time and part-time faculty for in-classroom instruction, as well as to explore health insurance options for part-time professors." The union is affiliated with the Service Employees International Union.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009 - 3:00am

The University of Michigan on Monday released the results of a July audit showing that the university's football team did not turn in required forms that track the amount of time players spend practicing. The revelation comes as the National Collegiate Athletic Association and the university look into allegations that the Wolverine football program broke NCAA rules limiting the amount of time players participate in athletic activities.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009 - 3:00am

The job market for new college graduates has fallen by as much as 40 percent in the past year, according to new data from the Michigan State University Collegiate Employment Research Institute. The Michigan State study is based on surveys of 2,500 companies and other hiring entities. Last year, the survey projected an 8 to 10 percent drop in hiring, but the final figures are closer to 40, and an additional 2 percent drop is anticipated on top of that.

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