The Pennsylvania state auditor is expected to release a report today finding that Cheyney University is in dire financial health, and that without dramatic changes, its “ability to continue to operate is questionable," The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported. Cheyney is a historically black college within the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, a system that has faced appropriations cuts and enrollment declines in recent years, but Cheyney's problems appear worse than those of other system institutions. The university's 2014-15 budget projects a $5.5 million deficit, the audit found. Cheyney's enrollment fell 16 percent last year, and 36 percent over the period 2010-14. University officials have said that they are working on the problems identified in the report.
Submitted by Paul Fain on December 3, 2014 - 3:00am
Student-loan borrowing at public institutions has increased the most in states where government support for higher education has declined, according to a new report from the Center for American Progress. In states with the largest per-student decline in funding, for example, median student borrowing increased by $1,781 between 2008 and 2012. The center called for federal investment, matched by money from states, to help curb increasing student debt levels.
The University of Alabama at Birmingham is poised to shut down its football program this week, Sports Illustratedreported. The magazine, citing unidentifid sources, said the university plans to fire its athletics director and announce that it is discontinuing its football team, which qualified for a bowl game Saturday for the first time in a decade. The decision on football comes as UAB is developing a university-wide strategic plan.
Many students and legislators are angry that Kean University paid $219,000 for a custom-built conference room table, NJ.com reported. The university did not seek bids on the project and used a Chinese company as part of an effort to build ties to China. Dawood Farahi, Kean's president, told NorthJersey.com it was "small-minded" to make inquiries about the cost of the table.
UPDATE: A spokeswoman for Kean, via email to Inside Higher Ed, said the table should be viewed as a "conferencing center" because it includes electronic equipment, storage for the equipment and lighting, and is more than the conference table itself. The photo below is of the table.
Students started sit-ins last week at the University of California's campuses at Berkeley and Santa Cruz to protest the Board of Regents' vote to approve tuition increases for the system. The Berkeley sit-in started Wednesday, The Los Angeles Times reported. The protesting students there are issuing updates and demands through this website. Cornel West, a professor of philosophy at Union Theological Seminary, stopped by the Santa Cruz sit-in to endorse the effort. He said occupying buildings "puts the spotlight on an issue."