Hillary Clinton took her presidential campaign back to Iowa Monday, where in a speech at the University of Northern Iowa she vowed to push colleges to strengthen efforts to fight sexual assault, The Des Moines Register reported. She said that one-time programs for freshmen aren't enough, and that education efforts need to be continuous. She said that too many colleges have overly bureaucratic processes that don't do enough to help victims of sexual assault. She also specifically noted that men can be the victims of sexual assault. In a meeting with reporters after her speech, Clinton also spoke about the importance of due process. “There should be a fair process to try to determine the appropriate consequences. And obviously, in order to get to that, there has to be some basis of evidence and proof,” she said.
Higher Education Quick Takes
Shirley Malone-Fenner has resigned as vice president for academic affairs at Wheelock College, following the news that material in her letter welcoming faculty members back for a new academic year included unattributed material from Harvard President Drew Faust and others, The Boston Globe reported. Malone-Fenner has admitted using the words of others and has apologized. Faculty members discovered the use of the material after running Malone-Fenner's letter through plagiarism detection software that the college uses for the work of students.
The faculty union at Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District is protesting contract provisions for two presidents that offer reimbursement for certain kinds of expenses (cars and mobile phones) but also have a “professional expense allowance” of $850 a month for which no receipts or documentation are needed, The San Diego Union Tribune reported. “I’m sure every employee of the district would like to get an $850 pay raise,” said Jim Mahler, a San Diego City College math professor who is president of the American Federation of Teachers Local No. 1931. “This is clearly a way to give them an added salary. It sends a bad message.”
District officials said they could not discuss why the contract provisions are appropriate because of a pending arbitration issue.
A new report from the Campaign for College Opportunity, a nonprofit group, breaks down how Asian-American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander students are faring in higher education in California. The group is the fastest growing racial and ethnic segment in California. It is also heavily reliant on public colleges -- 87 percent of Asian-Americans first enroll in a California community college or a California State University or University of California campus, the report found.
There are wide disparities in the college attainment levels among the group. The report said that looking at Asian-Americans as one monolithic group can lead to inaccurate assumptions, particularly that Asian-Americans are doing well in earning degrees.
For example, 70 percent of adult Indian-Americans in California hold at least a bachelor's degree, according to the report, compared to only 10 percent of adult Laotian-Americans.
Shirley Malone-Fenner, vice president for academic affairs at Wheelock College, sent a start-of-the-year letter to faculty members, and a number of passages came, without attribution, from the words of others, The Boston Globe reported. Six passages came from a letter from Drew Faust, Harvard University's president. Other phrases came from speeches by the presidents of Rutgers University and the University of the Pacific. Faculty members discovered the phrases by running Malone-Fenner's letter through plagiarism detection software that the college uses to check students' work. Malone-Fenner told the Globe: “In preparing my message, I reviewed many letters from other institutions and used words from others’ welcoming messages without attribution. What I intended to share is quite simple -- I am excited about working with each member of the faculty to make this a most successful year.”
A professor at the University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley asked students in a class syllabus to “Please refrain from saying ‘God bless you,’” before the statement was removed amid outcry from students, KGBT reported. Neither the station nor the university has named the professor, whose syllabus turned up on social media last week as some criticized the request as limiting free speech. But the university said in a statement that the syllabus “sought to identify examples of potentially disruptive behavior the professor believed could hinder the classroom learning environment, including use of cellphones.” The intent was not to limit the religious freedoms of students, the university said, “but to avoid unsolicited comments that might distract others.”
The 65 colleges in the "Power Five" conferences announced a slew of new legislative proposals Friday, including a measure that would allow athletes to use their "names, images, and likenesses to promote their own non-athletic business ventures." The proposal, introduced by the Pacific 12 Conference, will be voted on at the National Collegiate Athletic Association's annual meeting in January.
Other proposals being considered for January include placing new limitations on how much time students can spend on athletics, allowing NCAA championships to take place in states that allow sports wagering and letting athletes enter the National Basketball Association draft multiple times while remaining eligible.
Butler University has reversed a decision to place a university spokesman as the adviser to the student newspaper, The Butler Collegian, The Indianapolis Business Journal reported. Many journalists at Butler and elsewhere criticized the decision as creating a conflict of interest. The university has now named Nancy Whitmore, the director of the Eugene S. Pulliam School of Journalism, as the interim adviser, while the university looks for a permanent adviser. The previous adviser, a faculty member, served at a time when some journalism in the Collegian was critical of the university.
A large-scale foreign scholarship program funded by the Brazilian government will likely be scaled back as the country faces an economic crisis and a dramatic slide in the value of its currency, Times Higher Education reported. The budget for the Sciences Without Borders program, which launched in 2011 with the goal of sending more than 100,000 Brazilian students abroad, would be reduced from about 3.5 to 2.1 billion Brazilian reals under budget proposals recently presented to the country's congress. Some expect that the scholarship program will be cut back to only pay for graduate (and not undergraduate) awards.