Higher Education Quick Takes

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Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 3:00am

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday let stand lower court rulings dismissing a lawsuit by a men’s sports advocacy group opposed to James Madison University’s 2006 decision to eliminate seven men’s teams and three women’s teams. Equity in Athletics, an advocacy group, had argued that James Madison “overdid its elimination of male athletes," violating Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. The U.S. Education Department was added to the case because the group challenged the federal agency's enforcement of Title IX.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 3:00am

In the wake of Gov. Jerry Brown's decision to eliminate the California Postsecondary Education Commission, the state's college and university systems have stepped in to fulfill some of the agency's duties in ways that threaten to elevate institutional interests over state needs, California's Legislative Analyst's Office said in a report issued last week. The report recommends more direct legislative oversight and the establishment of another formal oversight body when the economic situation permits.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 3:00am

In today’s Academic Minute, Beth O’Leary of New Mexico State University explains the emerging need to protect historically important sites on the moon. Find out more about the Academic Minute here.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 4:30am

Although Joe Paterno was ousted as football coach at Pennsylvania State University last year, he is still giving to the university. The Centre Daily Times reported that Paterno and his wife donated $100,000 recently to the university to two non-athletic programs with the Paterno name. They donated $50,000 to the library and $50,000 to a fellows program in the College of the Liberal Arts.


Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 3:00am

Morgan State University on Sunday indefinitely suspended its head basketball coach, Todd Bozeman, after the president of South Carolina State University and a number of other people said they saw Bozeman punch a player during a late timeout in the road game Saturday. But, The Baltimore Sun reported, Bozeman, who is on paid administrative leave, has maintained that witnesses exaggerated the interaction, which he described as “accidental” and like “coming around a corner and bumping into someone." Now, Bozeman’s lawyer is accusing university administrators of violating the coach’s contract and the university’s discipline policies by refusing to allow an appeal of the suspension. Morgan State hired Bozeman after he emerged from an eight-year ban for National Collegiate Athletic Association recruiting violations at the University of California at Berkeley.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 3:00am

Protests and political battles are creating tensions and leading to evictions at Sri Lanka's universities, BBC reported. Students complain about a range of government policies and proposals to create private universities, a move they see as one that would end a tradition of free higher education in the country.


Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 3:00am

In her first extensive interview since her work was dropped from Newt Gingrich's next book, Katharine Hayhoe, an atmospheric scientist at Texas Tech University, defended climate science and criticized the politicization of the issue. Hayhoe spoke to The Guardian, saying: "I really, really deplore the politicization and polarization of this issue. There are these increasingly unprincipled attempts to polarize the science when the science is fact -- like the sky is blue, the grass is green and the temperature of our planet is increasing."

Gingrich is getting ready to publish a collection of essays on environmental issues, and Hayhoe had been included. But she was dropped after Rush Limbaugh criticized her inclusion. National Journal published an article about, and video of, Gingrich being approached by a would-be supporter who had heard Limbaugh's criticism, and who was reassured when Gingrich assured her that the essay would be removed from his book.


Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 3:00am

The Board of Governors of the California community college system on Monday voted to endorse recommendations from a state task force that seeks to improve student success amid a backdrop of deep budget cuts. The recommendations include more of an emphasis on first-time students who are on-track to a degree or credential, a controversial shift for a system that has long been steadfastly committed to open access. But the task force and system leaders argue that the 112 colleges are already rationing slots, having turned away 140,000 students in a recent year, with an estimated 200,000 who will be frozen out this year. California's Legislature is scheduled to consider the recommendations in the next two months.

Monday, January 9, 2012 - 4:30am

Organizers have failed in their attempt to gather enough petition signatures to force a vote in California on whether to repeal the state's Dream Act, The San Francisco Chronicle reported. The drive needed about 500,000 signatures and was about 57,000 short. California's Dream Act allows -- in certain circumstances -- students who lack the legal documentation to live in the United States to receive state financial aid.


Monday, January 9, 2012 - 3:00am

The annual meeting of the Modern Language Association has long been the site of hook-ups (and gossip about hook-ups, real, exaggerated and fictional). Craigslist personals for Seattle (the meeting location) provide an insight into the current status of the genre of the MLA pick-up line. (Historians and economists also held annual meetings last week, but only one related personal, from a historian, could be found from their meetings on Craigslist for Chicago, where both groups convened.) Among the MLA members posting on Craigslist, one wrote "Drop me a line and let's see what extra credit work we can come up with." Another listed his qualifications this way: "I'm attractive and a literary genius from the wrong side of the tracks." Yet another asked those replying to "include either the word 'De Man' or 'Derrida' in your subject line."


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