Higher Education Quick Takes

Quick Takes

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Wednesday, October 31, 2012 - 3:00am

The majority of 18- to 29-year-olds are following the election and plan to vote Tuesday, according to a poll released Tuesday by the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement at Tufts University. The poll found that engagement had increased since July, as had support for President Obama among young people.

The poll found 67 percent of young people plan to vote, and that 52 percent plan to vote for Obama, 35 percent for Mitt Romney, and 4 percent for a third-party candidate, and 8 percent are still undecided. Whether college students will vote has been a key question for the Obama campaign, since young people formed the base of his support in 2008.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 - 4:22am

Under pressure from his board, Lars Hafner agreed Tuesday to resign as president of the State College of Florida, The Bradeton Herald reported. Two trustees -- who were not among those who clashed wtih Hafner -- then announced that they were quitting. Hafner's supporters, including many who work at the college, say he was a strong advovate for the institution and helped it expand. His board critics were appointees of Governor Rick Scott, a Republican, and said Hafner had failed to practice fiscal conservatism.

 

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 - 4:25am

Israel's Council for Higher Education has given Ben-Gurion University's political science department three weeks to correct what the council sees as various failings, or to risk being shut down, Haaretz reported. The council has cited a review calling for the department to expand its offerings. But many in the department and many academics all over the world who have signed petitions on the issue believe that the alleged quality concerns are a cover for political concerns. Ben-Gurion's politics department is home to prominent critics of Israeli government policies and right wing groups in Israel have accused the program of being "anti-Zionist."

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 - 3:00am

Public colleges and universities have an obligation to work on improving college readiness, and a special responsibility to focus on areas of concentrated poverty, a task force of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities says in a new report. "Serving America’s Future: Increasing College Readiness" argues that more aggressive efforts to strengthen not only academic preparation but also personal and social readiness for college is in institutions' self-interest as well as the national interest.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 - 3:00am

These meetings, conferences, seminars and other events will be held in the coming weeks in and around higher education. They are among the many such that appear in our calendar, to which campus and other officials can submit their own events. Our site also includes a comprehensive catalog of job changes in higher education; please submit your news to both listings.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 - 3:00am

In today’s Academic Minute, Chris Olivola of the University of Warwick reveals why a politician’s looks can often have more of an influence on voters than his or her stated policies. Learn more about the Academic Minute here.


 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 - 3:00am

In a surprise move, Grand Canyon University this week said it would not accept the gift of a 217-acre campus in Northfield, Mass., according to a corporate filing. Five weeks ago the Hobby Lobby chain of craft stores announced that it had selected the for-profit institution after a lengthy search for a Christian owner for the property. Grand Canyon said it planned to spend an estimated $150 million to develop a second, 5,000-student residential campus at the new location. The filing revealed little about the about-face, noting only that the company had determined that accepting the campus would not be in its "best interest." However, in an interview with the Religious News Service, Grand Canyon's CEO said the city of Northfield had resisted the planned campus.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 - 3:00am

Halloween season tends to bring outrage over blackface costumes at campus parties -- and this year the discussion is at the University of Florida. Some students came to a "rock stars and rappers" party at a fraternity not only in blackface, but with black paint over their bodies, and their costumes also featured gold chains and saggy pants, The Gainesville Sun reported. The university's chapter of the NAACP posted a photo of the students on its Facebook page with the statement: "Students at UF had a party last night, and guess who they came dressed as? Whose party this is is not the issue but the fact that this is seen as acceptable is where the problem lies!"

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 - 3:00am

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday heard oral arguments in a case that explores whether re-sellers can hawk cheaper versions of textbooks, produced for students overseas, to U.S. students. The case, the second the court has heard in two years involving what is known as the "first sale" doctrine, could have major implications for how much publishers charge for their textbooks, both in the United States and abroad. Accounts in The New York Times and Wall Street Journal of the court's hearing in Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. described justices divided over the arguments made by publishers and by the former graduate student whose resale of foreign-made textbooks earned $1 million in sales a year and brought the wrath of the publishers. (Note: This item has been updated from an earlier version to correct factual errors.)

 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 - 4:27am

The University of Chicago on Monday announced new efforts to make it easier for students who go to high school in Chicago to attend the university. Application fees for the students will be waived. Loans will no longer be part of aid packages. And the university is creating an Admissions Academy that will help high school students navigate the application process, regardless of whether they are applying to Chicago or elsewhere.

 

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