Higher Education Quick Takes

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Friday, May 1, 2015 - 4:27am

For three years, Cheyney University failed to meet its requirements to track federal student aid awarded to its students, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported. Colleges and universities are required to do such tracking to make sure students are eligible, and Cheyney could have to repay funds for which it can't document student eligibility. Just under $50 million in aid awards was not tracked, and that process has now started. It is unclear how much the university could owe. Cheyney, a historically black college in Pennsylvania, is already facing significant financial problems.

 

Friday, May 1, 2015 - 3:00am

Fifty-seven percent of schools and colleges responding to a new survey reported that they use social media in fund-raising. That's up from 47 percent a year ago. The results are from a survey by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, Huron Education and mStoner.

 

Friday, May 1, 2015 - 4:17am

A California jury has rejected a class action against the California State University System over a 2009 tuition increase, City News Service reported. Students challenged the increase as illegal since they had already paid tuition. But the university argued that it had warned repeatedly of the possibility of tuition increases as the state imposed deep cuts in appropriations for higher education.

 

Friday, May 1, 2015 - 3:00am

In today's Academic Minute, Kristen Ghodsee, a professor at Bowdoin College, presents a historical account meant to counteract a negative association. Learn more about the Academic Minute here.

 

Thursday, April 30, 2015 - 4:28am

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, last year sought leniency for Corinthian Colleges after the Education Department imposed tight limits on the for-profit provider's access to federal aid, Bloomberg reported. In a letter to senior department officials obtained by Bloomberg, Rubio argued that the department should show leniency to Corinthian while it was cooperating with the department's investigation. “It has been brought to my attention that the U.S. Department of Education has recently placed extreme financial constraints on Corinthian Colleges, Inc. by restricting the company's timely access to federal financial aid. It is my understanding the Department of Education has requested extensive documents be provided by Corinthian Colleges for review, and Corinthian has acted in good faith to try to provide these documents as expeditiously as possible,” Rubio wrote.

The Bloomberg article also noted that Corinthian Colleges contributed $5,000 to Rubio's political action committee during the 2014 election cycle.

A spokesperson for Rubio defended the letter, telling Bloomberg, “Senator Rubio felt it was important to protect the thousands of students in Florida from being punished and having their educations disrupted while the investigation was underway. His priority has always been to improve access to higher education options and increase transparency ‎in higher education.”

 

Thursday, April 30, 2015 - 4:32am

Many scholars whose research might take them to Cuba have cheered the Obama administration's moves to loosen the rules on travel to the country. But professors at public universities in Florida will have to keep waiting. A Florida law bars public university professors or students from travel to any country in the Western hemisphere that is on the U.S. government's list of nations supporting terrorism. Even though President Obama has now removed Cuba from that list, The Miami Herald reported, the board that oversees Florida's universities has asserted that the ban remains in place until there are full diplomatic relations with Cuba. But the Herald reviewed the law and found no such provision. Some faculty members say that the state board is simply trying to block their travel to Cuba.

Thursday, April 30, 2015 - 4:23am

A California judge on Wednesday nullified a $400,000 exit package that Pasadena City College's board last year provided to Mark W. Rocha as he was leaving the presidency there, The Los Angeles Times reported. The judge ruled that the board violated California law by failing to discuss and vote on the proposed agreement in public. Rocha left amid a series of conflicts with faculty members over his leadership.

Thursday, April 30, 2015 - 3:00am

Don't mess with the townies. That's the lesson longtime Quinnipiac University President John Lahey learned after he got in hot water for stopping by a raucous off-campus party last weekend and cheering the partiers on, joking about the university buying up more houses in the Hamden, Conn., neighborhood. 

Not surprisingly, the joke didn't go over well with neighbors -- one town planner said Lahey's comments, captured on video, displayed "unfortunate and disappointing arrogance" - and on Wednesday Lahey issued an apology. 

“Last Saturday, I attended five student events on and off campus, including the senior awards ceremony, the undergraduate awards ceremony, a university baseball game, a student veteran organization barbecue, and on my way home in the early afternoon, at the invitation of some graduating seniors, I made a brief appearance at their off-campus house party,” he said in a statement.

“In speaking to students at the house party, and in an obvious but ill-advised attempt to be humorous with them, I unfortunately made light of what is clearly a serious matter with respect to off-campus student housing in Hamden. I deeply regret having made these remarks, for which I sincerely apologize. I have already personally conveyed this apology to interim Mayor Jim Pascarella and renewed my commitment to work with him and town officials to resolve these long-standing student housing issues in the immediate future.”

Thursday, April 30, 2015 - 3:00am

Many internships require candidates to have specific skills to be considered, and while most internships are still aimed at undergraduate students, positions in the sciences and technology development are increasingly reserved for graduate students, a new report finds. The report, "No Experience Necessary? The State of American Internships 2015," was produced by the labor market analytics firm Burning Glass.

Thursday, April 30, 2015 - 3:00am

A new U.S. Department of Homeland Security rule will allow spouses and children of international students to study in the U.S. as long as they are enrolled for less than a full course of study. The amended rule will also remove a cap on the number of designated school officials nominated at any given institution: designated school officials, or DSOs, as they’re called, are tasked with overseeing compliance with U.S. immigration requirements vis-à-vis international students and scholars. 

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