Boston U Will Avoid Investments in Coal, Tar Sands Oil

Boston University announced Tuesday that it will avoid investments in coal and tar sands oil, citing those as "the most carbon-intensive fuels." A statement from the university noted that divestment may not be complete because of the policies of some mutual funds in which the university has holdings.

Ivy League announces proposals for curbing early recruitment of athletes

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Urging colleges to change a recruiting culture that targets middle schoolers, Ivy League announces proposals for curbing early recruitment of athletes.

USC 'Hires' Full-Time Wellness Dog to Help Students Destress

Getting a job in academe can be dog-eat-dog. But for Professor Beauregard Tirebiter, it was just dog-be-dog. The black goldendoodle has been hired by the University of Southern California as the institution's first-ever full-time facility dog, according to USC News. (Note: Earlier versions of the USC News story and this story reported that the animal was academe's first full-time facility dog. Both posts have since been updated to reflect that he is one of several.) Facility dogs are similar to therapy dogs, but they work with changing groups of people rather than one person who needs assistance. Beau, as he’s nicknamed, works out of USC’s Engemann Student Health Center. His official title is wellness dog, and he has office hours, business cards and a Twitter account.

Students are invited to drop by to pet Beau throughout the day to relieve stress and anxiety. USC also hopes Beau will help students seek additional health services they might otherwise feel uncomfortable accessing. Beau is funded by the Trojan League of Los Angeles, an alumni group that is interested in student wellness.

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Changing times require response-enabled leadership (essay)

In changing times, our campuses need not only individual leaders but also a collective environment of leadership, writes Judith S. White.

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State College of Florida Manatee-Sarasota Faculty Votes to Form Union

The faculty of State College of Florida at Manatee-Sarasota has voted 75 to 24 to join a union affiliated with the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers, the Herald Tribune reported. More than 90 percent of the faculty cast ballots. The vote comes a year after the college’s Board of Trustees voted to eliminate its rolling contract system, which was something like tenure. Now even long-serving faculty members are on one-year contracts.

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Claflin Stops Banning Pregnant Students From Dorms

Claflin University has ended a policy of barring pregnant students from living in its dormitories. The university announced this month that it was ending a previous policy for pregnant students and would abide by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. NBC News provided the background: in 2015, the university kicked a pregnant student out of a dormitory and also refused to refund the rent the student had paid. The student sued and the university recently settled the case.

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Struggling with low attendance at games, colleges turn to beer sales

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For decades, beer sales at college football games were nearly unheard-of. Now many programs are turning to alcohol to help boost attendance and revenue.

Syracuse ousted dean after he was arrested for patronizing a prostitute

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Syracuse dismissed head of business school without public explanation and suspended him from faculty job. He had been arrested for patronizing a prostitute.

Chicago State Pays $600,000 to Dismiss President

Chicago State University's board on Friday approved a deal to pay $600,000 to end the presidency of Thomas Calhoun Jr., the Chicago Tribune reported. Many faculty and student leaders say Calhoun has done a good job at the financially struggling university and shouldn't be fired. Many spoke out at the board meeting where trustees -- without saying why they wanted Calhoun out -- approved the deal.

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Clearinghouse Data on Time to Degree

The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center today released a virtually comprehensive look at how long it took American college graduates in 2015 to earn their degrees. The new report is based on completion data for two million students who that year earned either an associate or bachelor's degree. It includes information on students who previously dropped out or transferred, which many other data sets struggle to capture.

The time-to-degree numbers include both students' active academic enrollment time and calendar years. Doug Shapiro, the center's executive research director, said the report is based in part on a complex measure devised to account for active enrollment, including factors such as part-time enrollment, colleges' varying academic schedules and students who were enrolled concurrently in multiple institutions.

On average, bachelor's degree earners from four-year, public institutions spent 5.2 academic years of full-time equivalent enrollment over a span of 5.6 calendar years. Students graduating from four-year private colleges took slightly less time to earn degrees: 4.8 academic years over 5.4 calendar years. Four-year for-profits had an average time to degree of 5.8 years across 8.8 calendar years.

On the community college side, the associate-degree earner had an average of 3.3 academic years of enrollment over 5.6 calendar years.

“Each additional term or semester has the potential to increase the cost to the student, both through forgone earnings and additional tuition expenses,” Shapiro said in a written statement. “Yet, spells of part-time enrollment and nonenrollment often enable students to mitigate these effects by combining earning and learning. Families and policy makers need to plan accordingly for this new reality.”

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