South Carolina State University is running out of money, and lacks the funds to make payroll next month, The Times and Democrat reported. Officials said the university nearly was unable to make payroll this month, but was saved by a commission check from Sodexo, the dining services contractor, which nearly didn't get paid because the university owes Sodexo $2.3 million. The historically black university is appealing to the General Assembly for $13.6 million for current bills and those about to be faced by the institution.
Authorities arrested 18 students Wednesday who refused to leave the area of the president's office at the University of Texas at Austin, The Austin American-Statesman reported. The protest was over a "shared services" plan in which certain functions that have been performed at the departmental level will instead be centralized. The plan is expected to save a lot of money, and also to eliminate many jobs. The university released this summary of the plan and its rationale, noting that it has not been finalized.
Mid-Continent University, a private institution in Kentucky, will close June 30, KFVS 12 News reported. The university has been financially struggling, and facing rumors about a possible closure for months. All employees received layoff notices, and the university hopes that some faculty members will volunteer to allow a final cohort of students to graduate. The university enrolls about 300 students on campus, and another 600 online or through off-campus programs.
Dartmouth College today announced a $100 million gift, the largest in the college's history. Half of the gift will match other gifts. The donor is anonymous. A major use for the funds will be Dartmouth's cluster hiring initiative, in which groups of faculty members will be hired with various interdisciplinary research agendas.
Harvard University plans to sign the United Nations-backed Principles for Responsible Investment framework. The move does not force the university to take a specific action, like avoiding certain stocks or divesting from fossil fuel producers, which the university has declined to do, but obliges it to consider environmental, social and governance records to the extent they affect investments. A Harvard spokesman said the university will integrate “energy consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and resource scarcity, and social issues such as health and safety and employee productivity into investment analysis.” Harvard President Drew Faust also announced Monday the university will do more to confront climate change by supporting climate change research and continuing to cut greenhouse gas emissions caused by the campus.
Pearson Embanet could earn up to $186 million over 11 years from its deal to manage the new University of Florida online college, The Gainesville Sun reported. The article details efforts by the university to keep many details (including how Pearson Embanet's performance will be judged) private, saying that they are trade secrets.
California's storied Master Plan has led to a structure and financing of public higher education that is out of sync with the needs of students and the state, according to a new report from the Institute for Higher Education Leadership and Policy (IHELP) at California State University at Sacramento. The report calls for heightened planning and collaboration at the regional level. It also makes the case for more cost-effective specialization at individual institutions as well as the broader use of technology, such as online education.