Quick Takes: Tenure Appeal Denied to Intelligent Design Supporter, Wellesley Replaces Loans, Probation for Western CC's, Maryland's Study of Slavery, Female Students Who Drink, New Charges at Oral Roberts, Seeking Compromise on Border Fence

February 8, 2008
  • The Iowa Board of Regents on Thursday rejected the appeal of Guillermo Gonzalez, who had been denied tenure in the department of physics and astronomy, The Des Moines Register reported. Gonzalez is a supporter of intelligent design, which most scientists view as a non-scientific cover to attack evolution, and his backers have accused Iowa State of discriminating against him for his anti-evolution views. The university has maintained that a variety of measures of his scholarship were the crucial factors in the tenure review -- and those measures didn't have anything to do with evolution.
  • Wellesley College announced Thursday that it would replace loans with grants for students on financial aid who come from families with annual income below $60,000, and would reduce loans for those on financial aid with higher income levels.
  • The Accreditation Association of Community and Junior Colleges, part of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, placed three institutions on probation at its meeting last month and continued the probation of three others. They two-year colleges put on probation were: Modesto Junior College, Los Angeles County College of Nursing and Allied Health, and College of Marin; those continued on probation were College of the Redwoods, Lassen College and Northern Marianas College. The accrediting agency also removed two institutions from probation: Brooks College and Hartnell College.
  • Prompted in part by Brown University's commission that studied links between the institution and the slave trade, many other institutions have considered how to explore that part of their history. The University of Maryland at College Park has just announced a new approach to conducting such a study. In the next academic year, a senior-level course in the history department -- with admission based on competitive application -- will conduct research and prepare a report for the university president. The course will be taught by Ira Berlin, one of the leading historians of slavery in the United States.
  • First-year female undergraduates who, as many do, significantly increase their drinking upon starting college, are significantly more likely to experience sexual assaults or other physical assaults, according to a study by the Research Institute on Addictions, of the State University of New York at Buffalo.
  • A former accountant suing Oral Roberts University has added new charges to his suit and now argues that more than $1 billion was funneled through the university annually for inappropriate uses, including personal gain by some officials, The Tulsa World reported. University officials denied the charges.
  • The University of Texas Board of Regents has adopted a resolution endorsing the importance of homeland security, but criticizing a federal plan to build a fence in south Texas that would separate part of the campus of the University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost Campus, The Austin American-Statesman reported. The regents are seeking more negotiations over the plan, which is opposed by the Brownsville campus. A federal suit for access to land for the fence is possible.
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