Thursday, July 19, 2018

University of Iowa axes 7 centers due to reduced state funding - James Paterson, Education Dive

The University of Iowa is closing seven centers and cutting funding to five more in the next year to save an estimated $3.6 million and to make up for revenue lost in state budget cuts. The move will eliminate 33 jobs, according to the Des Moines Register. The centers to be closed are dedicated to a variety of specialties, including workplace-related training, dentist recruitment, relations with China, farm safety and understanding the aging process. In the past decade, the University of Iowa, Iowa State University and the University of Northern Iowa have relied increasingly on tuition as their revenue source, raising 63% from students last year compared to 49% in 2008. State aid dropped 17% in that period to 32% of revenue for the three state public universities.

College Opportunity at Risk - Institute for Research in Higher Education, University of Pennsylvania

The College Opportunity Risk Assessment is the first state-by-state analytic tool to consider the breadth of the policy landscape that must be navigated to ensure future educational opportunity. All states face risks to college opportunity, but each state faces different types and levels of risk within their diverse economic and social realities. To guide state policy makers in mitigating these risks, we offer individual state risk assessments based on four interrelated risk categories—higher education performance, educational equity, public funding and productivity, and economic policies that influence public revenue and budgeting.

Where are all the women apprentices? - Caroline Preston, Hechinger Report

According to a new study by the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning think tank, women made up only 7.3 percent of apprentices in 2017. That share is up by just 1.1 percent since 2008, even though apprenticeships have started to expand beyond traditionally male professions such as construction into fields such as IT and early childhood education. Apprentices earn a wage while gaining skills. But that wage tends to be considerably lower for female apprentices than males, according to the study. Women were earning a median of $11.49 an hour at the time they completed apprenticeships, compared to $27.25 for men. Female apprentices in male-dominated professions were paid less; meanwhile, apprenticeship programs in industries dominated by women, like child care, paid far less than ones in traditionally male fields.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Where work pays: How does where you live matter for your earnings? - Lauren Bauer, Audrey Breitwieser, Ryan Nunn, and Jay Shambaugh; Brookings

Educational and occupational choices matter for your earnings, but where you work matters, too. Employment opportunities and wages in some occupations vary substantially from state to state, county to county, and city to city. One location might be a great place to earn a living as a nurse but not as a construction worker (e.g., New Orleans, Louisiana), while a different location might be the opposite (e.g., Utica, New York). Does it make sense for people starting or advancing their careers to move? And if it does, to where should they move? Editor's Note: An interactive tool accompanies this economic analysis, allowing users to see the distribution of annual earnings across the United States for a given occupation and age group, adjusting for cost of living and taxes.


StraighterLine, the student success and college readiness company, and the New Hampshire-based New England College have partnered to offer students an accelerated associate degree pathway program. New England College will use more than 20 of StraighterLine's online general education credits for this new program, helping create an affordable and flexible option for students that costs less than $10,000. Offered 100% online, this accelerated program is offered thought the college’s School of Graduate and Professional Studies and provides students an opportunity to earn an Associate of Arts in Professional Studies in as little as 15 months. Interested students will start by successfully completing a free credit-bearing course. Once enrolled, remaining tuition is $9,900 for the entire 60-credit program and financial aid is available. Classes start August 20, 2018.

Budget cuts to reduce cleanliness of De Anza -Simone Clay, La Voz News

De Anza College will lose custodial and grounds positions affecting overall cleanliness on campus, according to members of the Administrative Services Planning and Budget Team. The APPA-U is the body charged with assessing campus cleanliness. De Anza’s campus is currently at a APPA-U level of four. With the cuts, our campus may attain level five classification, which is “Unkempt Neglect.” Trash removals and campus cleanings will be reduced from twice weekly to weekly, no event set-up or breakdowns (delivery only), limited assistance with replacing broken furniture and limited ability of staff to work overtime supporting weekend activities.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Missouri Law will allow higher education to recover cuts through tuition - Rudi Keller, Columbia Tribune

State colleges and universities in Missouri will be able to recover cuts in state funding from students in the form of tuition increases under a bill signed by Gov. Mike Parson. The change to the state tuition cap, which since 2007 has tied tuition for resident students to the general inflation rate, allows institutions to add up to 5 percent to the inflation rate to cover a state cut. The provision was included in a higher education bill that also protects the University of Missouri’s status as the state research institution and MU and Lincoln University’s status as land-grant universities. The willingness of governing boards to use the new power will be tested in the spring when rates are set for the 2019 academic year. Every community college, eight of the 10 four-year universities and the State Technical College of Missouri will receive less in state support in the current year than in the fiscal year that ended June 30.

Haysville horticulture research center fights to save itself after K-State cuts - RAFAEL GARCIA, Wichita Eagle

Staffers and people who rely on one of Kansas State University's research centers just south of Wichita are trying to find a way to keep the center open after the university announced it would close the center. Landscapers and gardeners in the state could lose a valuable information resource in the John C. Pair Horticulture Center in Haysville, members of the horticulture industry said, if the center can't find new sources of revenue once it's cut from the university's budget. The center has seen its share of budget cuts over the years, but K-State's decision to close the center seemed abrupt to the center's staff and faculty, who said they weren't consulted. There's no other center in Kansas quite like it, Jason Griffin, director of the center, said. Although the university has other horticultural research centers in Manhattan and Olathe, the Haysville center experiences conditions that are unique to the southern half of the state.

Accreditor clears path for $1.9 billion Strayer-Capella merger - Autumn A. Arnett, Education Dive

The merger between Capella University's parent company, Capella Education Company, and Strayer Education Inc., the parent company of Strayer University, has been approved by the Higher Learning Commission and is expected to close on or before Aug. 1. The resulting company will be named Strategic Education Inc., according to a July 9 Security Exchange Commission filing. The $1.9 billion deal will create one of the largest for-profit companies in the country, serving roughly 80,000 students between them. The two institutions will continue to operate as "independent and separately accredited institutions." Strayer shareholders will own 52% of the combined stock and Capella shareholders will own 48%.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Lies, Damned Lies and Rankings - Scott Jaschik, Inside Higher Ed

Temple reveals that scandal over false information submitted for rankings of its online M.B.A. was much broader than earlier known. Dean, found to have dismantled system for checking accuracy of data, is ousted. Temple University on Monday announced that its business school had submitted false data for years for rankings purposes. The university said that it had asked Moshe Porat, dean of the business school, to resign, saying that he had dismantled the business school's system for verifying the accuracy of data being submitted for rankings. An outside review found that the employee responsible for preparing the data said he did so at the dean's direction, although Porat denied this to the outside investigator.

Study Shows How Working Community College Students Fared - Marjorie Valbrun, Inside Higher Ed

Among the key findings of the report: Of the 44 percent of students who worked while enrolled in their first year of postsecondary education, 18 percent worked 35 hours or more per week, 14 percent worked between 21 and 34 hours per week, and 11 percent worked fewer than 21 hours per week. Twenty percent of beginning students who worked 20 hours or fewer while enrolled in 2011-12 had attained an associate degree by 2014, compared with 10 percent of students who did not work while enrolled in their first year and 9 percent of students who worked full-time during their first year.

When Faculty Lines Pay for Themselves - Colleen Flaherty, Inside Higher Ed

Faculty members often fear administrative efforts to “optimize” academic operations. That’s because some such efforts result in the elimination or shrinkage of programs deemed to be unsuccessful by key metrics, but worthwhile in harder-to-measure ones: the program with low numbers of majors but that delivers a large share of general education credits, for example, or that rounds out the liberal arts curriculum. Sometimes, though, optimization efforts can actually help academic departments. Case in point: Stephen F. Austin State University, which used the services of Ad Astra Information Systems to close holes in its scheduling system -- and then used newfound funds from expected higher course enrollments to approve 19 additional full-time, non-tenure-track faculty lines.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

State Schools Urge Students Burned By Closing For-Profit Colleges To Give Them A Chance - REBECCA MARTINEZ, WUNC

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro and Wake Technical Community College are two public institutions encouraging students from three for-profit colleges to consider them for transfer this fall.  South University in High Point and the Art Institutes in Durham and Charlotte will close at the end of the year. Like other for-profit colleges, those schools attracted older non-traditional students, many of whom opted not to go to college right away. UNCG Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management Bryan Terry said he understands that these students are probably frustrated, but he encouraged them not to let the school closures derail their academic pursuits.

Who shoulders most of nation's $1.48 trillion in student debt? Women - CBS News

Women owe about $890 billion of the country's $1.48 trillion student loan debt, nearly double the $490 billion owed by men, placing them at a financial disadvantage as they begin their careers, according to a recently released report from the American Association of University Women (AAUW). The study, which analyzed data from the U.S. Department Education from the 2015-2016 school year, also found that women graduating with bachelor's degree owe on average $2,700 more in student loans than men do. Women, who account for 56 percent of enrolled college students, are far more likely than men to graduate owing money -- 71 percent for female grads vs. 66 percent for male grads, according to the AAUW.

The tech industry leads the way in revolutionizing student loan debt - JAZZY QUICK, Big Think

With the average student loan borrower owing in the $27,900—$50,000 range, it’s no wonder that national student loan debt in America is at a record high of $1.52 trillion. And to make that statistic worse, STEM-based degree programs are pumping out a considerable portion of the borrowers with debt, due to students taking out massive amounts of loans in order to compete in a saturated job market. A survey shared by CommonBond gave data that depicts how the technology industry might be the most affected the most by student loan debt. Currently, approximately 53% of workers have student loan debts, according to CommonBond, and of those borrows, 65% of them are paying off $50,000 or more in student loans.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

More high school grads than ever are going to college, but 1 in 5 will quit - Jon Marcus, Hechinger Report

While the number of students has been rising, however, so has the proportion who begin as full-time freshmen but fail to come back for a second year. Fifty-five percent who started in 2015 were gone by the following year, the most recent period for which the figures are available, according to U.S. Department of Education data analyzed by The Hechinger Report. That’s up from 44 percent two years before.

Why Enrollment Is Shrinking At Many American Colleges - Richard Vedder, Forbes

A seven-hour car ride northeast from WIU's Macomb campus brings you to the home of Eastern Michigan University (EMU). Enrollment, more than 25,000 in 1990, is around 21,000 today. A few hours drive to the southeast, at the University of Akron, enrollment fell from almost 30,000 in 2011 to 23,114 in 2016, a decline of more than 20% in five years. The enrollment declines have been particularly acute in the industrial Midwest, but noticeable elsewhere as well. The basic problem is that colleges actually impart directly employable skills for only a very modest portion of the college population (such as engineering and accounting majors) and that employers hiring high paid workers feel they need someone with more than a degree from the College of Last Resort. I do not see this trend changing much soon to help the Western Illinois and Eastern Michigans of the world.

Getting a better return on investment from higher ed - TJL, WV News

Now, a new funding formula created by the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission would reduce funding for three schools: WVU would lose $9.2 million; WVU Tech would lose $3.3 million; and Glenville State College would lose $1 million. Those figures are based on last fiscal year’s $229.4 million total state appropriation for public colleges and universities. It doesn’t make sense to reduce funding to WVU when it is producing such a great return on investment for the state and the economy of North Central West Virginia. Nor does it make sense to reduce funding to WVU Tech, considering the move to Beckley just occurred in the past two years. Glenville State, on the other hand, is an even bigger challenge, considering its rural service area and limited operating resources. Of course, to close Glenville State would be devastating to the economy of Gilmer County.

Friday, July 13, 2018

Budget cuts slow hiring process a extension office -AA+A Bookmark and Share - Nick Schrager, Springfield Sun

Though the county has a new extension office building, it’s missing two important people; a 4-H agent and agriculture agent. According to Horticulture Agent Dennis Morgeson, the University of Kentucky is holding approximately 70 positions due to budget cuts from the state. Morgeson said it’s important to note that when the state cuts from the university’s budget, “the university cuts the College of Ag, the College of Ag cuts extension, and extension has to hold on hiring agents to meet their budget.”

North Dakota University System faces lowest budget in a decade - Sydney Mook, Grand Forks Herald

With potential cuts looming, the North Dakota University System may be working with funding levels last seen about a decade ago if 13 percent budget cuts are approved by the Legislature next year. The State Board of Higher Education approved the system's needs-based budget request last week in Mandan during the board's regular meeting, which still has many steps before anything is finalized. NDUS general fund appropriations increased from $533 million during the 2009-11 biennium, up to $737 million during the 2015-17 biennium, Tammy Dolan, vice chancellor for administrative affairs and chief financial officer, said Thursday. However that number dropped sharply during the last biennium to $614.3 million.

Worries at Antioch College Concerns rise over enrollment and finances at the storied small liberal arts college in Ohio.- Rick Seltzer, Inside Higher Ed

Some faculty members have grown increasingly unsettled about Antioch College’s future, worrying the small private liberal arts college in western Ohio is trailing enrollment goals for its upcoming fall quarter even as it comes off a period of furloughs and pay cuts. College officials on Thursday disputed an anonymous tip that Antioch currently has 34 new students signed up for its Class of 2022, significantly trailing a goal of 75 that was made public earlier this year. Antioch is focused instead on enrolling the right mix of students to hit a new revenue target, they said. But they did not share any alternative new student enrollment snapshot Thursday, saying only that the college is on track for a significant increase over last year.