Rollins College has decided to strip the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship of official recognition as a student group because it requires leaders to be Christian and support certain views, the Orlando Sentinel reported. Representatives of the fellowship, which has faced similar policies at other colleges, complained that the Florida independent college is intolerant of students with evangelical and other strong religious views. But the Rollins Board of Trustees rejected the group's request for an exemption from the college's anti-discrimination policy, which bars student groups from discriminating based on factors such as religion, race and sexual orientation.
Higher Education Quick Takes
A transgender student at Emerson College, first turned down by his student health insurance for the breast removal survey he sought, will be covered by the college's insurer after all, The Boston Globe reported. Donnie Collins's story went viral after his fraternity raised nearly $20,000 to pay for his surgery after he found out it would not be covered by insurance. But Emerson officials confirmed with its insurer, Aetna, that its policy did cover such an operation.
The U.S. Department of State is investigating claims of exploitative living and working conditions faced by guest student workers at three McDonald’s franchises in central Pennsylvania, The Patriot-News reported. The students, who came to the U.S. on J-1 visas, staged a protest on Wednesday, and have petitioned McDonald’s for restitution and improved conditions for guest workers. McDonald’s said it is investigating the situation.
Liberty University, founded by Jerry Falwell in 1971, has doubled its enrollment in the last six years -- twice -- to become the largest private university in the country, The Washington Post reported. Much of the growth has been online. Total enrollment at Liberty is now 74,000, with 62,000 enrolled online. (The 74,000 figure is more than 30,000 more than the enrollments at other large private nonprofit institutions, such as New York University, the University of Southern California and Brigham Young University.) A 2010 article in Inside Higher Ed explored Liberty's online strategy.
Students were terrified Wednesday when an intruder came into a law school class at Seattle University and engaged in bizarre behavior, The Seattle Times reported. A man in a trench coat, eating ice cream, entered the classroom, sat down at a table at the front of the classroom and refused the professor's request that he leave. Authorities said he turned over tables and other classroom furniture and that some students thought he might pull a gun (he didn't). The man was arrested on trespassing charges.
The U.S. Education Department's Office for Civil Rights plans to investigate how the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill handles sexual assaults on the campus, the Associated Press reported. The agency said in a March 1 letter that it would conduct an inquiry into a complaint filed on behalf of 64 women in January that alleged, among other things, that said the individuals who run the campus judicial system mistreated victims and that upper-level administrators pressured them to underreport sexual assault statistics to the federal government.
It's that time: a new month, a new Cartoon Caption Contest.
Click here to suggest a caption for March's cartoon, the latest drawing by Matthew Henry Hall. The three entries deemed most clever and creative by our experts' panel will be put to a vote by our readers, and the winner will receive a $75 Amazon gift certificate and a signed copy of the cartoon.
Click here to vote on the three captions nominated by our judges as finalists for our February cartoon.
And congratulations to the winner of our January contest: Aaron J. Moore, director of alumni relations for the California State University System's chancellor's office and executive director of the CSU Alumni Council. Find out more about him and his submission by visiting this link.
The University of Michigan will today announce a $50 million gift for its graduate program in writing, AnnArbor.com reported. The gift is believed to be the largest ever for a writing program, and comes at a time that mega-gifts have become much more common for science and business programs than for those in the humanities. The gift is from Helen Zell, a Michigan graduate and longtime supporter of the program.
Both houses of the Texas Legislature approved a measure Wednesday that would merge two existing institutions to create one university in South Texas, and give the region its first medical school, The Monitor reported. The legislation would formalize a plan hatched late last year by the University of Texas System to merge its Pan American and Brownsville campuses, which are about 60 miles apart, to strengthen the delivery of education in the Rio Grande Valley. The legislation would also create a new medical school to try to address a physician shortage in the region.
State regulators in California have ordered Aristotle University -- an unaccredited institution investigated for preying on foreign students -- to close, NBC San Diego reported. The television station, whose original reporting earlier this year prompted an investigation by the Department of Homeland Security, published a letter in which the state Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education said that Aristotle's founder, Xanthi Gionis, would face $50,000 in fines if he didn't shut the school in two weeks.