Student services

NACUFS Southern Regional Conference

Wed, 03/06/2013 to Sat, 03/09/2013


Lubbock , Texas
United States
Texas US

U.S. says self-funded student health plans meet Obamacare threshold

Health agency proposes that self-funded student insurance plans be considered as meeting "minimum" coverage under health care law's individual mandate.

Lesley settlement flags food allergies and campus dining

Justice Department settlement with Lesley U. suggests that colleges may need to add specialized mealtime services for students with food allergies.


Religious colleges deciding whether to allow blessings of gay unions in their chapels

Two religiously affiliated colleges -- Augustana College and the University of the South -- decide whether to permit the blessing of same-sex unions in campus churches.


NAGAP's 18th Annual Winter Institute for Advanced Graduate Enrollment Management Professionals

Thu, 01/24/2013 to Fri, 01/25/2013


San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino 1309 Ashford Avenue
00907 San Juan
United States

Book argues colleges should do a better job engaging with religion

A new book argues that colleges can find revitalization by paying more attention to religion on campus.

6th Annual Sloan-C/MERLOT Emerging Technologies for Online Learning International Symposium

Tue, 04/09/2013 to Thu, 04/11/2013


3667 Las Vegas Boulevard South Planet Hollywood Resort
89109 Las Vegas , Nevada
United States
Nevada US

Pitt, Johnson & Wales make big internship promises

Pitt promises every student who wants an internship will get one, but experts say it's going to be a challenge. Johnson & Wales University's stipend program for anyone who wants unpaid position enters second year.

Do college students know enough about Islam? (essay)

Do your students learn everything they know about Islam from their Facebook news feed? 

There’s no doubt that there’s been resurgence in religious conflict dominating the news cycle. The international violence around the ugly, offensive video of the Prophet Muhammad has perpetuated the cycle of misinformation and prejudiced opinions between the American public and the Muslim world.  

The national political scene has also had its fair share of religious name-calling. This tendency comes from both sides of the aisle, including regular references to Governor Romney’s inability to drink a beer or a Coca-Cola as obvious reasons why he has a difficult time connecting with the American public or continued whispers about President Obama’s Muslim heritage despite his own repeated affirmations of his deep Christian belief. 

And over the summer, we saw these sparks of religious bigotry fan into flame in the attacks on the Sikh gurdwara in Oak Creek, Wis., and on a Muslim mosque in Joplin, Mo. 

With this kind of information and misinformation circulating in the news media and in the broader public discourse, it’s only fair to wonder where and how Americans get information about their religious neighbors. Furthermore, the information that they’re getting isn’t good – Pew research tells us that the average American scores about a 50 percent on a religious literacy quiz. For the higher education community, the question is even more specific: Do our students know how to distinguish fact from fiction about religious diversity and identity in the global landscape? 

For many campuses across the country, proactively addressing this question goes beyond providing neutral facts. For these institutions, it’s not enough that a graduating senior can tell you the role of the Prophet Muhammad in Islam or explain why Mitt Romney won’t join you for a beer on Friday night.

These institutions want something more – they want  positive, productive relationships between religiously diverse students on campus. More than that, they want their students to gain the leadership skills to cultivate that same positive interaction between individuals of religiously diverse backgrounds into the future. 

Campuses are putting this vision into action in a variety of ways. Elon University is establishing a brand-new campus interfaith center specifically designed to build interfaith literacy and leadership on campus. Dominican University has incorporated particular texts on interfaith cooperation into its required first-year and sophomore seminar program. 

In addition to these kinds of proactive efforts, campuses are reacting positively to the recent international events.  Following the recent spate of religious violence overseas, students at Augustana College reached out to local media contacts to share accurate information about Islam and meet with student leaders committed to advancing interfaith cooperation. 

Religious conflict in the news and public discourse couldn’t make the need to promote interfaith cooperation more clear, regardless of the method that a campus chooses to prioritize this important issue.  With the dual realities of global religious conflict as well as broad religious illiteracy, the responsibility of higher education to prioritize interfaith cooperation is as pressing as ever.  

This priority is in fact shared by President Obama – in 2010, he launched the President’s Interfaith and Community Service Campus Challenge as a call to action for higher education to make interfaith cooperation a norm within the sector.  Over 250 institutions participated last year and 260 have joined the Challenge this year. (Here’s more information about it.)

Campuses across the country have the opportunity to join this Challenge as a proactive way to educate their students and build positive relationships across religious identity lines -- and we can show the world that this is what it means to be an American.

Eboo Patel is founder and president and Mary Ellen Giess is vice president of campus partnerships at Interfaith Youth Core.

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Study examines contradictions that define today's young people

Today's students are connected/isolated, internationally inclined/globally ignorant, and ambitious/dependent, posing challenges for colleges that enroll them, a new study finds.



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