Higher Education Quick Takes

Quick Takes

April 4, 2014

North Carolina State University called off a rap concert scheduled for tonight, and student organizers are criticizing the decision, ABC 11 reported. University officials cited student safety as the reason, saying that they had seen reports that Migos, one of the groups slated to perform, had been involved in a shooting incident in Florida last week. Black students are planning a rally tonight in place of the concert, charging that their events are held to a higher standard, and that there was no need to cancel the event.

April 4, 2014

In a major development vis-à-vis international scientific collaboration, NASA has suspended the majority of its ties with the Russian federal space agency, Roscosmos, in light of what NASA described as “Russia's ongoing violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity,” CNN reported. Collaboration with Roscosmos will continue, however, in regards to the International Space Station. Since the retirement of NASA’s shuttle program in 2011, the U.S. has had to rely on Russian Soyuz vessels in order to send American astronauts to the station.

Inside Higher Ed reported earlier this week that many academic partnerships between the U.S. and Russia are continuing per usual despite growing tensions between the two governments over Russia’s actions in Ukraine. 

April 4, 2014

Diana G. Oblinger, president and CEO of the higher education information technology organization Educause, on Thursday announced she will retire in March 2015. Oblinger has been involved in the organization's leadership for a decade, also serving as vice president between 2004 and 2008.

In a message to the Educause CIO listserv, Oblinger said her decision was based on "a variety of personal reasons," but did not elaborate. The Educause Board of Directors will begin the search for Oblinger's replacement next month, according to a press release.

April 4, 2014

In today’s Academic Minute, Nathan Spreng, assistant professor of human development at Cornell University, discusses how he is using advancements in neuroimaging to better understand how the brain functions and changes as we age. Learn more about the Academic Minute here.

 

April 4, 2014

A study published in the journal Science Thursday documents a much broader economic impact for research grants than has commonly been believed. The study found, for example, that fewer than one in five workers supported by federal research funding are faculty members. In addition, the study found that universities that receive grants on average spend 70 percent of the funds with businesses outside their home state.

April 4, 2014

Suzanne Ortega was named Thursday as the next president of the Council of Graduate Schools. She will succeed Debra W. Stewart, who in October announced plans to step down. Ortega is currently senior vice president for academic affairs of the University of North Carolina System.

 

April 4, 2014

Massachusetts sued Corinthian Colleges Thursday, charging that it engaged in illegally deceptive marketing, including the use of inflated job placement statistics and high pressure tactics on prospective students. The suit by the state attorney general charges that the for profit system's campuses in the state told prospective students that various programs had placement rates ranging from 70 to 99 percent, when the rates in these programs were actually between 20 and 30 percent.

Kent Jenkins, a Corinthian spokesman, told The Boston Globe that Corinthian has "a strong record of offering students a quality education and treating them honestly and fairly." Jenkins said that the attorney general didn't even one complaint from a student at a Massachusetts campus.

The announcement of the suit, however, does quote such a student. The student says that a Corinthian recruiter "called me every day at any time during the day or night to tell me that car[eer] will change my life. Guess what? It didn’t! I’m working at my city grocery store.”

 

April 4, 2014

Linda Le Mura, provost of Le Moyne College, will be named today as the institution's next president. She will become the first female lay president of any of the 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the United States.

April 4, 2014

The Education Department's Office for Civil Rights has started an investigation into how Florida State University responded to allegations of a sexual assault by Jameis Winston, a star football player, USA Today reported. Florida officials announced last year that no charges would be filed against Winston, but victim's rights advocates have questioned the way authorities and the university responded to the case.

April 3, 2014

Florida was a pioneer in having community colleges offer four-year degree programs (and having them drop "community" from their names). Now, some legislators are raising questions about whether the four-year programs overlap too much with offerings of the state university system, Miami Today reported. College leaders defend the programs, saying that they meet key education needs in their local communities, and that state universities don't have capacity for all of the students But Joe Negron, chair of the Florida Senate Appropriations Committee, said his concern was the impact on university budgets and aspirations. “I think we have great universities, but I want to see them get to an elite level, where we have universities in Florida that are thought of with the University of Virginia, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill [and the] University of Michigan,” he said. “And we can’t do that if we have two systems that are overlapping."

 

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