Higher Education Quick Takes

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Friday, September 2, 2011 - 3:00am

In today’s Academic Minute, Pamela V. Thacher of St. Lawrence University explains why actively trying to find sleep only increases its elusiveness. Find out more about the Academic Minute here.

Friday, September 2, 2011 - 3:00am

Stephen Kinzey, an associate professor of kinesiology at California State University at San Bernardino, is a fugitive as authorities seek to press charges related to allegations that he led a group called the Devils Diciples (sic), a motorcycle gang that sold methamphetamine, The Los Angeles Times reported. Sheriff Rod Hoops announced the search for Kinzey at a press conference, saying: “It’s alarming to me -- I have kids in college." Albert Karnig, president of the university, issued a statement in which he said that Cal State was unaware of the allegations until they were announced. "If the allegations are indeed true, this is beyond disappointing," he said.

Kinzey's Twitter feed indicated that on Wednesday and Thursday, he may have been late for class.

Friday, September 2, 2011 - 3:00am

Harvard University has upped to $65,000 the family income level at which students will not need to pay anything to attend the institution. In 2004, Harvard revamped its aid program, and said that students with family income below $40,000 would not need to pay anything. That figure was increased two years later to $60,000.

Friday, September 2, 2011 - 3:00am

Julius Nyang'oro has resigned as chair of the Department of African and Afro-American Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, but will remain on the faculty, amid reports of possible links between Nyang'oro and a football scandal, reported The News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C. The resignation followed reports in the News & Observer that Nyang'oro had hired a sports agent to teach a summer class this year without telling his dean about the agent's field of work.

Friday, September 2, 2011 - 3:00am

The U.S. Education Department has published guidance about the package of new federal regulations known as its "program integrity" rules, in the form of a new website with questions and answers about each of the regulations: gainful employment, state authorization for institutions that operate outside their borders, and incentive compensation, to name a few.

Thursday, September 1, 2011 - 3:00am

Wide gaps persist in the graduation rates of Division I football players and other male students, and these gaps are not limited to "football factory" institutions, according to a report released this morning by the College Sport Research Institute of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The study found only two conferences in Division I -- the Southwestern Athletic Conference and the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference -- in which football players graduated at rates greater than the full-time male student body. The Pac-12 (formerly the Pac-10) had the greatest gap, with football players graduating at a rate 26 points lower than other male students.

Thursday, September 1, 2011 - 3:00am

Over 76 percent of people in a survey in China said that universities don't disclose enough information about themselves, Xinhua reported. The news service reported that many students say that they must rely on personal networks for basic information. As a result, many students receive inaccurate information, the article said.

Thursday, September 1, 2011 - 3:00am

Two weeks after the Southeastern Conference put the brakes on intense speculation about an impending round of athletic conference switching, Texas A&M University announced Wednesday that it would leave the Big 12 Conference for another, unnamed sports league -- almost certainly the Southeastern Conference. Texas A&M's long-anticipated move could prompt another of the sorts of chain reactions that have occasionally buffeted big-time college sports in recent years. Texas A&M's departure, planned for July 2012, would leave the Big 12 with nine members (after last year's departures of the Universities of Nebraska and Colorado at Boulder), and the Southeastern Conference with an uneven 13. Many commentators expect it to try to add another member for an even 14 to split between its two divisions.

Thursday, September 1, 2011 - 3:00am

A recent article here explored how West Virginia University and some of the other champion universities at obtaining earmarks are adjusting to a post-earmark era. An article today in The Boston Globe looks at how colleges in Massachusetts -- a state with some universities that do quite well under peer review distribution of grants -- are shifting gears. While many of the colleges are hiring lobbyists to find federal funds, others are laying off workers, accepting that funds won't be as easy to obtain as in the past.

Thursday, September 1, 2011 - 3:00am

More than 200 members of United University Professions, the faculty union of the State University of New York, protested at the Canton campus Wednesday over a plan to have a single president (not the current Canton leader) for the Canton and Potsdam campuses, North Country Now reported. Canton faculty members say that savings will be minimal if any, and that the two-campus presidency shouldn't be forced on them. SUNY is a 64-campus system facing deep budget cuts, and system leaders say that they hope to promote efficiency by sharing campus services where possible, including a few presidencies.

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