Quick Takes: Low-Cost Lenders Missing From Lists, New Leader for Ford Foundation, Disney vs. U. of Washington, 4 Charged in Deadly Prank at Bradley, Hillsdale's Increased Independence, Adult Students Decline in N.Y.

August 14, 2007
  • Many colleges continue to leave low-cost loan providers off of "preferred lender" lists that they provide students, according to a new analysis from U.S. News & World Report. The magazine reported that some colleges said that they hadn't had time to update their lists, even though the scandal about such lists has been going on for months. Other colleges said that the lenders on their lists provided better service.
  • The Ford Foundation will today name Luis A. Ubiñas as its next president -- a key position in the world of philanthropy. The New York Times reported the selection, noting that Ubiñas is in some ways a surprising choice because his career has been in consulting for McKinsey & Company. Ubiñas has also been involved with many nonprofit groups, several focused on promoting education for disadvantaged students. Ford supports a wide range of programs on campuses in the United States and around the world -- both oriented around colleges themselves and research conducted by professors. Two key higher education efforts in recent years have included Difficult Dialogues, which provides grants to colleges working to enable students from diverse backgrounds to discuss differences in civil, open ways, and the International Fellowships Program, which supports graduate education for students from developing nations, with the goal of having those students return to their home countries to promote improvements.
  • The Walt Disney Company is demanding that the University of Washington retract an "inflammatory and misleading" press release about research about the impact of Baby Einstein, a Disney video product, and similar products for babies, The Denver Post reported. Research discussed in the press release questioned the educational value of the videos. Disney said that the release went too far in suggesting that the videos cause harm. A university spokesman said the institution was studying the Disney letter.
  • A Bradley University sophomore was killed in a house fire, and four have been charged in what authorities believe is a case of a prank that turned deadly, the Associated Press reported. According to a local prosecutor, the four charged lit a roman candle outside the sophomore's room, intending him to wake up suddenly, and run outside in his underwear.
  • Hillsdale College, which for more than 20 years has declined to accept federal funds, said Monday that it would no longer take financial aid money from the state of Michigan either, The Detroit News reported. Hillsdale officials said in a statement that they would relinquish about $670,000 in state tuition aid that about 350 students at the private institution receive annually and replace the money with private scholarship funds.
  • The number of New York's working adults enrolled in college fell by 20 percent between 1995 and 2005, at a time when the comparable figure increased by 4 percent nationally, according to a new report that characterizes the situation as dangerous for the state's economy. The study by the nonprofit Schuyler Center for Analysis and Advocacy and the Center for an Urban Future says that the dip has left New York in 43rd place nationally in the college attendance of adults aged 25 to 49, and that minor steps the state Legislature has taken to give part-time adult students access to state financial aid have not gone nearly far enough.
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