Pazmany Peter Catholic University, in Hungary, has announced that it will require all undergraduates to take a course on the Holocaust, Hungarian Free Press reported. The course will be developed by two professors from Tel Aviv University.
A new report on youth employability from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development finds that 39 million 16- to 29-year-olds across the OECD countries were not employed and not in education or training in 2013 -- an increase of 5 million since before the economic crisis in 2008. The report, titled "Skills Outlook 2015," finds that young people are twice as likely to be unemployed as "prime-age" adults, and that even youths who find employment "often face institutionalized obstacles to developing their skills and advancing their careers. For example, one in four employed young people is on a temporary contract. These workers tend to use their skills less and have fewer training opportunities than workers on permanent contracts. Meanwhile, 12 percent of employed young people are overqualified for their job."
Dozens of students at Webster University's campus in London have lost their federal financial aid after the university violated U.S. Department of Education regulations, the St. Louis Post-Dispatchreported. Neither the university nor the government elaborated on the nature of the violation, the end result of which, the newspaper noted, is that some students "now find themselves without a way to pay for the courses needed to graduate." Webster has tried to assist the affected students in a number of ways, including by helping them apply for private loans, by directly offering its own interest-free loans and by giving students the opportunity to transfer to another Webster campus or take courses online.
Webster, a private university based in St. Louis, operates dozens of locations across the U.S. and internationally. The issues regarding financial aid access at the London campus come in the wake of wide-ranging problems reported at Webster's campus in Thailand, as documented in an Inside Higher Edarticle and an internal Webster committee report.
The University of Texas at Austin may schedule a football game in Mexico City by 2020, as part of a plan to build the university's international brand, the Associated Press reported. The university's men's basketball team is already scheduled to play the University of Washington in China this November -- the first regular-season contest involving college teams in that country.
A new ad campaign by Massey University has set off a debate over the strategy being used by the New Zealand university. Various ads portray students with an “I am…” tag line. An ad being both criticized and defended (at right) features a female student appearing to walk on water in a sundress. The ad says “I am a game changer.” A column in Waikato Times called the student a “pixie vixen” and made fun of the idea that this approach would attract students. He asked if Massey was seeking students for dates or an education and, if the latter, whether it was to learn to walk on water.
It turns out the ad featured not a model, but a real student, Catherine Cater. She defended the ad in a Facebook post in which she called the criticism sexist. Addressing the columnist, she wrote, “You have ignored the age old rule of ‘never judge a book by its cover’ and have allowed yourself to judge me solely on my looks, as opposed to my intelligence, personality and character.”
The university is also defending the ad campaign and noting that the campaign consists of more than the one ad showing Cater. (Another ad is below.)
Criticism is growing over Rancho Santiago Community College District's $105 million contract to help two technical schools in Saudi Arabia, The Los Angeles Times reported. Faculty members have worried that the contract is supporting discriminatory policies. Now the Anti-Defamation League, which fights anti-Semitism, has weighed in with a letter to the college warning that it must abide by federal and state anti-bias laws even when it operates outside the U.S. “While we support programs that seek to establish collaborative relationships with universities in the Middle East, we do believe that special care must be taken when establishing programs where there are restrictions on the activities of programs based on characteristics such as religion, gender, national origin or sexual orientation,” said the letter.
Raul Rodriguez, chancellor of the district, said that it was in compliance with laws, but acknowledged that the Saudi government's policies are discriminatory. The technical schools that Rancho Santiago is helping educate only male students and bar the hiring of female instructors to teach male students. But Rodriguez said that Rancho Santiago doesn't do the faculty hiring. Of the college's view of Saudi Arabia's policies, he said, “It's not an endorsement. We're in no way condoning the views and stance of the Saudi government.”