A new law school at Canada's Trinity Western University, in British Columbia, appeared to have won all necessary approvals last year to start -- despite criticism from human rights groups about the university's policy of barring students from having non-heterosexual sex. But a new round of opposition has emerged. Critics have gathered enough signatures on a petition to force a new vote by the Law Society of British Columbia, whose council had approved accreditation of the law school, The Globe and Mail reported. A vote by the larger membership could go the other way. And even if the law school holds on to its accreditation for British Columbia, its graduates will not be able to practice law in Ontario because that province's legal society voted Friday against recognition, CBC News reported. Nova Scotia's legal society has taken a similar position, although it also stated explicitly that if Trinity Western ends discrimination against gay people, its law school can be accredited so that its graduates could work in the province.
Lehigh University has expelled a student who vandalized a multicultural residence hall, The Express-Times reported. The student's name was not released but the university said that he was drunk at the time and took eggs and tomatoes from a fraternity to throw them at the residence hall.
Three dozen students picketed the admissions office at Smith College Thursday to demand a change in the institution's policy with regard to transgender students, The Republican reported. Smith does not discriminate against transgender students once they are enrolled, but the college only admits women. The protest called for Smith to admit those who may be listed as male on their high school transcripts but have been living as women. Here is how Smith explains its admissions policy with regard to transgender applicants: "An application from a transgender student is treated no differently from other applications: every application Smith receives is considered on a case-by-case basis. Like most women’s colleges, Smith expects that, to be eligible for review, a student’s application and supporting documentation (transcripts, recommendations, etc.) will reflect her status as a woman."
Student leaders at the University of Utah have formally asked that the institution change parts of its fight song that are seen as racist and sexist, The Salt Lake Tribune. The song's name "Utah Man" is one point of contention. Others point to lines such as "Our coeds are the fairest." The university has yet to indicate whether it will make changes, but some alumni have demanded that the song -- beloved by many -- not change.
The case of a Rutgers U. philosophy professor accused of sexually assaulting a man with cerebral palsy raises questions about a controversial communication method much debated by disability studies scholars.
A new study in Education Next argues that the primary impact of the "10 percent" plan in Texas -- under which those in the top 10 percent of high school graduating classes are assured admission to the public university of their choice in Texas -- has been more on where students enroll, not whether they enroll. The study looks at students in a large urban district, comparing those who just made it into the top 10 percent and those who didn't. The student found those in the top 10 percent are much more likely than the other group to enroll in a flagship university, but they do so at the expense of enrolling at private colleges, and were likely headed to college either way.
A rejected black applicant to the University of Michigan participated in protests last week, charging that the university could increase its black enrollment by admitting students like her, The Detroit Free Press reported. In going public with her story, supporters of affirmative action said that they were trying to focus (as critics of affirmative action have done) on the compelling stories of those turned away. In this case, the rejected applicant is Brooke Kimbrough, who has a 3.6 grade-point average and an ACT score of 23. While supporters said that she could succeed at Michigan, critics said that the university was correct to turn her down, given that her academic record wasn't superior to those getting in. According to the university, the average high school G.P.A. is 3.85 and the 50th percentile of admitted students have ACT composite scores of 29-33.
San Jose State University has been taking a number of steps in the wake of the shock and anger over last fall's incident in which a black student was tormented for months by his suitemates. A special panel was charged with recommending ideas on how to promote a more racially inclusive and non-discriminatory environment and last week it issued its final list of ideas. Among them: create a new office of diversity engagement and inclusive excellence, conduct a campus climate survey every other year, study why graduation rates are low for black and Latino male students and develop a plan to reverse the trend, and require all students to take a diversity and ethnic studies course.
Excelencia in Education has released a new report with state-by-state data on Latino college completion rates. The report notes that raising those rates can be a key strategy for those who want to increase the percentage of Americans with college credentials.