U of Hong Kong Council Rejects Candidate with Pro-Democracy Ties

In a case that’s been closely watched for its academic freedom implications, the University of Hong Kong’s governing council voted 12 to 8 to reject the appointment of Johannes Chan Man-mun to a pro vice chancellor post, the South China Morning Post reported on Tuesday. Chan, a former law dean, is widely perceived as being punished for his support for democracy and his close ties to Benny Tai Yiu-ting, a co-founder of the Occupy Central movement.

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4 North Seattle College Students Killed in Crash

Four international students at North Seattle College were killed on Thursday in a collision between a charter bus and an amphibious "Ride the Ducks" tour vehicle that left dozens of others injured, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported. The college said the bus was carrying about 45 students and employees from its international programs office to a new student orientation event at the Seattle Mariners' stadium, Safeco Field.

The college said several students remained in critical condition on Thursday evening, and other students and an employee sustained serious injuries. The crash occurred on Seattle's Aurora Bridge.

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Student Questioned for Reading Terrorism Studies Textbook

Staffordshire University, in England, has apologized to a student who was questioned by a university official after he was seen reading a terrorism studies textbook in the library, The Guardian reported. Mohammed Umar Farooq, who was enrolled in the university’s terrorism, crime and global security master’s program, said he was asked his views on homosexuality, the Islamic State and Al Qaeda. Farooq said he was so unsettled by the incident that he chose not to continue his program.

Staffordshire’s apology to Farooq came after a three-month investigation. The university said it was responding to a “very broad duty … to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.” A new law imposing a duty on universities to counter extremist ideology went into effect in the United Kingdom this week.

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The Syrian refugee crisis and higher education

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Multiple programs and scholarships seek to help refugees from Syria and elsewhere obtain higher education, but the need dwarfs the response.

Iran Allows Americans to Enroll at Tehran U

Iranian authorities have given permission for five Americans to enroll in a master's program at Tehran University, a move being hailed in Iran as a breakthrough that might not have been possible without the recent lessening of tensions between Iran and the United States, The Christian Science Monitor reported. The students are enrolled in a program in Iranian studies. Three other Americans are enrolled in a Persian language program.

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Dartmouth Drops Need-Blind Admissions for Foreign Students

Dartmouth College will no longer be need blind in admitting international students, starting with the next admitted class (the class of 2020). The college had previously been one of a small number of American institutions that didn’t consider financial need in admitting international students under a policy that was in place for the classes of 2012 through 2019.

Dartmouth will continue to meet 100 percent of financial need demonstrated by admitted international students, and remains need blind in admitting U.S. citizens and permanent residents, applicants with refugee or asylum status in the U.S., and undocumented students in the U.S., according to a university spokeswoman.

“Our goal is to increase and stabilize the population of international students on campus, and to enroll a population that is geographically, culturally, ethnically and socioeconomically diverse, and which is robust and sustainable. Financial need will be considered as just one of many factors,” Dartmouth’s director of media relations, Diana Lawrence, said in an email.

5 Years in Prison for Fraudulent Admissions Consultant

An education consultant who was found guilty by a Massachusetts jury of defrauding a Hong Kong family of $2 million was sentenced Thursday to five years in prison, and ordered to repay the family $839,000, The Boston Globe reported. Mark Zimny was charged in the case with claiming that, for fees, he could get their sons into top colleges, and he made these claims with no authority from the colleges.

Plan seeks to promote advanced degrees without brain drain for Egypt

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Private equity company offers full scholarships for master's level study in U.S. or Europe, but students must return home for two years of work after finishing degrees.

College Chief Gets Prison for Fraudulent Visas

A college leader accused of participating in a scheme to commit student visa fraud has been sentenced to a year in prison for submitting false documents to the Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of California announced. Jerry Wang, the chief executive officer of Herguan University, pleaded guilty to document fraud in April.

“Jerry Wang has admitted submitting over 100 fraudulent documents to the government in an effort to circumvent the rules applying to international students,” Acting U.S. Attorney Brian J. Stretch said in a statement. “In doing so, he has imperiled the programs that allow international students to visit the United States in order to engage in valuable educational exchanges.”

In addition to the prison sentence, Wang must pay $700,000 in fines.

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Toronto Universities Remove Posters for White Union

Three Toronto-area universities have removed posters that were place on campus advertising a "White Students Union," the Canadian Press reported. The posters went up recently at Ryerson University, the University of Toronto and York University. "A poster like that is obviously a cause for concern and if there are concerns that the subject matter is offensive, they will be taken down," said a University of Toronto spokeswoman, Althea Blackburn-Evans.

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