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July 21, 2014

Quote of the day:
“Education, therefore, is a process of living and not a preparation for future living.”
John Dewey

Corinthian Colleges to be monitored by ex-U.S. Attorney Fitzgerald (Chicago Tribune)
Former federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald agreed to serve as an independent monitor of Corinthian Colleges Inc., the struggling for-profit education company that agreed to sell or close its campuses, the U.S. Department of Education said on Friday. Fitzgerald, 53, is a partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, which he joined in 2012 after a decade as U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, which includes Chicago.

Meet 2014's Outstanding Colleges (Chronicle of Higher Education)
In our seventh annual survey, 92 colleges were recognized. Learn more about the 12 recognition categories in which each was evaluated. Colleges marked with a are on the Honor Roll.

Video Chat: Recapping ‘The Student Loan Mess’ (Chronicle of Higher Education)
For nearly two months The Chronicle Book Club has been discussing The Student Loan Mess: How Good Intentions Created a Trillion-Dollar Problem. Today we’re wrapping up the discussion with a video chat.

Great Colleges Create a Culture of Accountability and Cooperation (Chronicle of Higher Education)
Issues related to workplace quality, faculty and staff engagement, and institutional culture can be found daily in the headlines, including stories of leadership transition and votes of no confidence, concerns regarding "civility" (or worse, cases of bullying and sexual harassment), and debates over the continuing challenges of diversity initiatives.

ACE Fellow Program Creating Pipeline to Presidency for Women, Minorities (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
At 37 years old, Dr. Joseph L. Jones has accomplished more than some seasoned college educators twice his age.

Colleges Woo Native Americans With New Programs (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
Elijah Watson knows he wants to go to college. He also knows that it will be difficult to leave home on the Navajo reservation if he does.

Richland child care earns high rating (Herald & Review)
Achieving the highest level in the county, the Adele P. Glenn Early Childhood Education Center at Richland Community College has received a level 2 certification from the Illinois Quality Counts rating system.

What's Expendable? (Inside Higher Ed)
In March 2013, when the Faculty Senate at Mary Baldwin College met with the college’s president, tensions were running high. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Defending MLA Reform Plan (Inside Higher Ed)
The Modern Language Association report on the Ph.D. in languages and literatures has already succeeded in sparking a lively debate. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Economics of Higher Education (Inside Higher Ed)
Very often in higher education, when we look at enrollment numbers, the numbers are aggregated. We look at the headcount of students or the number of full-time students or the number of new students or transfer students, etc. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

U of I plans to close Rockford psychiatric clinic (Springfield State Journal-Register)
The University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford is planning to close its psychiatric clinic early this fall. Read more:

Obama to Report Widening of Initiative for Black and Latino Boys (The New York Times)
President Obama will announce on Monday that 60 of the nation’s largest school districts are joining his initiative to improve the educational futures of young African-American and Hispanic boys, beginning in preschool and extending through high school graduation.

July 18, 2014

Quote of the day:
"Education, therefore, is a process of living and not a preparation for future living."
John Dewey

Both Sides Find Reason for Optimism After Latest Ruling on Texas Affirmative Action (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
When federal judges on Tuesday upheld the University of Texas’ use of race as a factor in college admissions, the decision sent two important signals. To proponents of affirmative action, the ruling was confirmation that diversity, particularly race and ethnicity, in education is an essential and constitutional goal. To the opponents who have waged a six-year battle to end the consideration of race, the decision means the fight will go on — again.

The next big jobs collapse: higher education (Fortune)
Colleges and universities face several daunting challenges up ahead. And it looks like the world of higher education may need to shrink to survive.

'Pay it forward' college tuition plan would cost students more, not reduce debt (
LANSING -- Lawmakers in Michigan and other states across the country have proposed creating college tuition plans that would let students pay a fixed percentage of their future earnings in exchange for an interest-free education.

Federal Loans Tough To Come By For Community College Students (NPR)
Tuition and fees at most community colleges are pretty reasonable these days, about $3,500 a year. Which is why the vast majority of community college students don't take out loans to cover their costs. But, according to the Institute for College Access and Success, a non-profit advocacy group based in California, nearly a million community college students who do need help paying for school don't have access to federal student loans.

WIU honored for improving student retention rate (Springfield State Journal-Register)
MACOMB — Western Illinois University has received an award for increasing its student retention rate. Read more:

Half of teachers leave the job after five years. Here’s what to do about it (The Hechinger Report)
Amid intense debate about new education standards, and teacher tenure and pay, the Alliance for Excellent Education has turned the focus to new teachers – and their tendency to quit.

Diverse Conversations: Teaching Higher Education: the Difference Between Diversity and Equity (The Huffington Post)
The nature of higher education is changing and the student population is changing at colleges and universities across the country. With luck, the promotion of equality in higher education will continue to engender equality in education - not only in terms of student access, actually, but in terms of employment.

OPINION - Underfunding higher education, lawmakers undercut job creation (The Kansas City Star)
Let us get to an important money issue at the outset: College graduates make a lot more money over their lifetimes than individuals without an undergraduate degree. Read more here:

Congress Considers Multiple Proposals in Advance of Higher Education Act Reauthorization (The National Law Review)
Recently, there have been a number of bills issued and proposals made as the U.S. Congress begins the process of reauthorizing of the Higher Education Act (“HEA”).

OPINION - For-Profit Colleges Under Investigation (The New York Times)
It seemed until recently that regulators and law enforcement agencies would never rein in the predatory for-profit colleges that enrich themselves and their shareholders by misrepresenting their programs, saddling students with high-cost loans and then shoving them out the door with useless degrees or no degrees at all.

Report: Nearly 1 million community college students can’t take out federal loans (The Washington Post)
Nearly 1 million students in community colleges are unable to take out federal student loans because their schools don’t participate in the federal program, an advocacy group reported Tuesday.

July 17, 2014

Quote of the day:
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed,it’s the only thing that ever has.”
Margaret Mead

Lindenwood administrator receives top Rotary Club award (Belleville News-Democrat)
Mary Reuter, who is Lindenwood University-Belleville assistant vice president and executive director of community relations, has been named a Paul Harris Fellow by the Belleville Rotary Club.

The Best Advice That College Students Never Hear (Business Insider)
College students hear the same advice over and over, from the importance of going to office hours to the need for extracurriculars.

Congress, Fretting Over Secrecy, May Miss Bigger Research Problems (Christian Science Monitor)
The proposed Secret Science Reform Act of 2014 runs only three pages, and would set a simple rule: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency cannot take any action based on research for which all underlying data are not publicly available.

U. of Texas Flagship’s Use of Race in Admissions Can Stand, Court Rules (Chronicle of Higher Education)
In a review ordered by the Supreme Court, a divided appellate panel endorses an affirmative-action policy

To Understand the Latest Ruling on Race in Admissions, Read These 4 Sentences (Chronicle of Higher Education)
You’ve probably heard of Fisher v. University of Texas, even followed it in recent years, but the case has bounced around so much that it’s hard for anyone to keep track.

Race in Admissions at the U. of Texas: How We Got Here, and What's Next (Chronicle of Higher Education)
A divided federal appeals court on Tuesday handed a win to supporters of affirmative action when it upheld the University of Texas at Austin's race-conscious admissions policy, but the decision will not end the wrangling over colleges' consideration of race in admissions. The Texas dispute has a long legal history. What follows is a guide to key moments in the case, and a look at what may come next.

How to Lie With Education Data, Part 1 (Chronicle of Higher Education)
The well-known quotation is usually attributed to Mark Twain: “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” But even that attribution is probably untrue.

How to Lie With Education Data, Part 2 (Chronicle of Higher Education)
On Tuesday I wrote about a tongue-in-cheek post at Forbes that tried to make a point about the cost of college. I argued that the piece failed readers by falsely equating cost and value, among other problems.

Would Graduate School Work Better if You Never Graduated From It? (Chronicle of Higher Education)
Learning continues long after college ends. What if being enrolled in college was also a lifelong condition?

In International-Student Recruitment, Questions About Integrity Persist (Chronicle of Higher Education)
The agent debate is dead. Long live the integrity debate.

OPINION - For Colleges, 'Free' Is About Much More Than Money (Chronicle of Higher Education)
On Astor Place in Lower Manhattan, you can stand on a street corner and see, for higher education, the power and fragility of the word "free."

More HBCU Faculty Lean Toward Raising Collective Voices (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
For years, faculty members at Harris-Stowe State University, a small HBCU in St. Louis, Mo., had complained about what they called a lack of shared governance; an iron-fisted, top-down management; low wages; limited resources for students; and a tenure and promotion system that they viewed as inconsistent.

OPINION - Addressing the Crisis Among Men of Color in Higher Education (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
Growing up wasn’t easy for Anthony Heaven. As an African-American male living in a city where the school-to-prison pipeline seemed to run through every neighborhood, Anthony tackled his share of race-based and socioeconomic obstacles to higher education.

Diverse Conversations: Black Men and College Initiatives ? Fair or Unfair? (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
There’s no denying that the numbers are dismal when it comes to Black young men who attend and graduate from colleges in the U.S. Statistically speaking, Black men have the lowest test scores, the worst grades and the highest dropout rates—in K-12 education and in college, too.

University of Phoenix Faces Government Financial Aid Review (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
NEW YORK ? Apollo Education Group said the U.S. Department of Education will review the administration of federal student financial aid programs by its University of Phoenix subsidiary.

OPINION - Why Higher Education Cannot Resist Disruptive Change (Forbes)
In the digital age, higher education, willingly or unwillingly, will undergo disruptive change. Existing institutions can lead the change or become its victim. If higher education resists, new digital institutions will be established to meet the needs of the time.

Dropping Profit (Inside Higher Ed)
These are hard days for most for-profit colleges. Declining revenues and an ongoing regulatory crackdown has led to speculation that some in the sector -- including one of the major, publicly traded companies -- will go nonprofit to get out of the crosshairs.

Clery Fines: Proposed vs. Actual (Inside Higher Ed)
WASHINGTON -- Since the U.S. Department of Education in 2010 formed a specialized unit to enforce the federal campus safety law known as the Clery Act, an increasing number of colleges have faced fines for violating it.

OPINION - The Liberal Arts Role in Teacher Education (Inside Higher Ed)
How might we prepare better schoolteachers? For over a century, colleges and universities have asked this question with varying levels of interest and commitment. Some have also asked questions more foundational.

For Community Colleges, Post-Recession Blues (Inside Higher Ed)
Angeline Godwin had been the president of Patrick Henry Community College for little more than a year when, in September 2013, her administration found a discrepancy in the college’s budget.

The Most Important Lesson for Young People in College (The Atlantic)
There's something you should know about those of us who write about higher education on the Internet: Behind the scenes, we're careful to coordinate our advice for young people to be as utterly confusing as is humanly possible.

Free college idea picks up momentum (The Hechinger Report)
Proposal would make the first two years of public higher education free

Federal education data show male-female wage gap among young college graduates remains high (The Hechinger Report)
Conventional wisdom has it that young men and women tend to earn similar wages as young adults, but that the male-female gap widens a lot with age, especially as women “lean out” during their child-bearing years.

OPINION - One Million Community College Students Can't Get Federal Student Loans (The Huffington Post)
Nearly one million community college students in 30 states attend schools that do not provide access to federal student loans, according to a report released this week by The Institute for College Access and Success.

A Tale of ‘Too Big to Fail’ in Higher Education (The New York Times)
For the last two years, the City College of San Francisco has operated in the shadow of imminent death. It is the city’s main community college, with 77,000 students, and in June 2012 its accreditor warned that chronic financial and organizational mismanagement threatened its future.

Not All Community Colleges Offer Federal Student Loans (The New York Times)
Roughly one million community college students lack access to federal student loans, which may limit their options for financing their education, a new report finds.

Stuck in Visa Debate, U.S. Risks Losing Researchers (The New York Times)
WASHINGTON — For years, United States policy makers have been debating the idea of granting green cards to foreigners with science doctorates. The cell biologist Xiao-Wei Chen, at the University of Michigan, is no longer waiting for them to decide.

Companies That Offer Help With Student Loans Are Often Predatory, Officials Say (The New York Times)
Student loan debt hovers at more than $1 trillion, a threefold surge from a decade ago, and a record number of college students who graduated as the financial system nearly imploded have an average debt load of more than $20,000.

SIU earns five-star rating from LGBTQ organization (The Southern Illinoisan)
CARBONDALE -- SIU received a five-star rating for the first time from Campus Pride, a leading LGBTQ campus rating and information index.

Firm targeting college students draws scrutiny (USA TODAY)
CINCINNATI -- A controversial company targeting college students is growing on campuses here, especially at the University of Cincinnati, that some complain is causing kids to drop out of college and get themselves in big financial trouble.

Scammers targeting college students in debt (
QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) - It's the prime time for scam artists looking to take advantage of students trying to pay for college, but there are some ways to protect yourself.

July 16, 2014

Quote of the day:
Ever tried? Ever failed? No Matter, try again, fail again, Fail better.
Samuel Beckett

Supreme Court hypocrisy in Wheaton College contraceptives case (Chicago Tribune)
It is a case of Supreme hypocrisy. The adjective refers to that nine-person tribunal at the top of the American legal system, the noun to its latest act of judicial malpractice — meaning not the notorious Hobby Lobby decision handed down at the end of June, but a less-noticed ruling a few days later. We have to revisit the former to provide context for the latter.

Richland earns Emergency Management designation (Herald & Review)
Richland Community College is the first community college in the state to receive the Ready to Respond Campus designation from the Illinois Emergency Management Agency

Win for Affirmative Action (Inside Higher Ed)
A federal appeals court on Tuesday upheld the University of Texas at Austin's consideration of race in admissions. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Lake Land looks to turn around enrollment dip (Journal Gazette & Times-Courier)
MATTOON -- Lake Land College summer semester enrollment figures are down 4.9 percent over the 2013 summer headcount, making for the lowest summer enrollment figures in the past seven years. Tina Stovall, vice president for student services, said summer enrollment is down but departments are also working on ways to jumpstart fall 2014 enrollment, which is down 10 percent compared to the same time last year.

Freshmen get jump on classes via EIU institute (Journal Gazette & Times-Courier)
CHARLESTON -- Many freshmen enter Eastern Illinois University without a credit on their transcript, ready to start from the beginning. But one group of freshmen will be half a semester ahead of their cohorts. As part of their conditional acceptance to Eastern Illinois University, freshmen from across the state entered EIU's Summer Institute for Higher Learning five weeks ago. The students completed their class projects and finished the program Tuesday.

Lake Land board takes first look at '15 budget (Journal Gazette & Times-Courier)
MATTOON -- The Lake Land College Board of Trustees during Monday's meeting took its first look at the 2015 budget, which calls for an overall decrease of $424,910 in expenditures versus last year. President Josh Bullock explained the savings will come from reducing expenditures with "strategic replacement" of retirees; staff reductions in force and not filling vacant positions; and operational efficiency initiatives and cutbacks in operational contingency funds.

Chamber hears info on SRC retention (McDonough County, The Voice)
Spoon River College President Curt Oldfield addressed enrollment retention strategies including new programs on Thursday at the Macomb Area Chamber of Commerce's government affairs meeting. Read more:

Here's Your Grant Money, College Students. Don't Spend It All in One Place (National Journal)
Imagine a would-be college student filling out just one financial-aid form and then being given her allotted Pell Grant money automatically each semester until graduation.

Melinda Gates Responds To Common Core Concerns (NPR)
“We got so interested in Common Core because we saw such a huge number of students not being prepared to go on to college,” Melinda Gates told Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson.

Full dorms prompt Culver-Stockton to curtail further residential admissions (Quincy Herald-Whig)
Culver-Stockton College is shutting down residential admissions for the 2014-15 school year effective Wednesday -- two weeks earlier than scheduled -- because the college's residence halls have been filled to capacity.

Appeals Panel Upholds Race in Admissions for University (The New York Times)
In a long-running affirmative-action case, a three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit on Tuesday upheld the University of Texas at Austin’s consideration of race as one of many factors in admissions.

Community Colleges in South Jersey: New places for a bachelor's degree (The Philadelphia Inquirer)
South Jersey, with its relative dearth of four-year colleges, appears to have adopted a new venue for delivering bachelor's degrees to residents: community colleges. Read more at

July 15, 2014

Quote of the day:
"We choose our joys and sorrows long before we experience them."
Khalil Gibran

Op-ed: College can start in high school (Chicago Sun-Times)
In neighborhoods across Chicago, there are thousands of young people with unlimited potential.

Scams target people struggling with student loan debt, Illinois says (Chicago Tribune)
After injuring her back on the job and getting a stomach illness, Sharone Brown of Chicago had trouble making her student loan payments, even after she sold her condo. Then she heard a radio ad from a debt-settlement company. The firm told her it could reduce her payments by $400 a month, to $49, she said.

Report Faults Education Dept.'s Oversight of Debt-Collection Firms It Hires (Chronicle of Higher Education)
An audit report released on Monday criticizes the U.S. Department of Education’s handling of borrower complaints lodged against private companies that help the department collect on defaulted federal student loans.

Moody's finds optimism (Inside Higher Ed)
The financial picture for higher education remains negative, but “green shoots” of stability are emerging, according to a new industry outlook by Moody’s Investors Service. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Inequitable Access to Loans (Inside Higher Ed)
Community colleges across the country that don’t offer access to federal student loans are imperiling nearly one million students who may turn to riskier forms of credit to fund their education, according to a report released Monday by the Institute for College Access & Success. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

UI to ask for 3.8 percent boost in state funding (News-Gazette)
The slides on the latest state economic update had titles like "Titanic Ahead" and "Worse News." Despite the dire forecasts, the University of Illinois outlined a budget request Monday that asks the state for more money for fiscal 2016 —

Illinois AG sues, alleging student loan debt scams (News-Gazette)
CHICAGO (AP) — Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan filed lawsuits Monday against two companies she says are scamming people who are paying student loan debts.

Two New Proposals Would Make College Free Nationwide (TIME)
With student loan debt crippling students, education advocates are suggesting ways to change how federal financial aid money is distributed.

July 14, 2014

Quote of the day:
Honest differences are often a healthy sign of progress.
Mahatma Gandhi

ISU helps develop electricity rate database (Bloomington Pantagraph)
Electricity rates from nearly 3,500 utilities across the country are now available in a free online database developed by Illinois State University in conjunction with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory....

Lisa Madigan to file lawsuits targeting student loan debt ‘scams' (Chicago Sun-Times)
llinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is expected to file two lawsuits Monday against two companies that, she alleges, have preyed on those trying to lighten their student loan debt.

Editorial: For-profit schools can’t prey on students (Chicago Sun-Times)
One reason to go to college is to get new experiences, but being defrauded shouldn’t be one of them.

Outside Opinion: Apprenticeship programs can close skills gap (Chicago Tribune)
The White House recently announced a $600 million investment in professional apprenticeship programs. The administration hopes to strengthen ties between community colleges and private companies — and equip workers with the skills they need to secure good-paying jobs in growing industries.

Illinois AG sues student loan debt settlement firms (Chicago Tribune)
Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan filed two lawsuits Monday against debt-settlement firms that she claimed perpetrated “scams” against consumers trying to pay off their student loans.

College, on Your Own (Chronicle of Higher Education)
ichele L. Pollock felt like she was moving through college in slow motion. In seven years, she had gotten about halfway through her bachelor’s degree.

U of I speeding up search for new president (Daily Herald)
University of Illinois officials are speeding up the search for a new president, saying they now hope to select someone before Thanksgiving.

Former Marine named Illinois veterans director (Herald & Review)
A U.S. Marine veteran who served three tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan has been named acting director of the Illinois Department of Veterans' Affairs.

Veterans vs. Land Grants (Inside Higher Ed)
As Congressional lawmakers seek to reconcile the differences between the House and Senate versions of Veterans Affairs Department reform legislation, one provision on the negotiating table has sparked a clash between veterans groups and public universities. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Trustees review successes and ongoing concerns (McDonough County, The Voice)
The Western Illinois University Board of Trustees convened on Thursday morning for the first day of a two-day retreat at the Multicultural Center, where they heard updates over WIU's budget, strategic planning for its Macomb and Quad Cities campuses and planned capital projects. Read more:

IBHE: UI president should lead state through changes in higher ed (News-Gazette)
The next University of Illinois president will have to adapt to — and should lead — fundamental changes in higher education, a state education official said Friday

How Private Colleges Are Like Cheap Sushi (NPR)
In New York City's East Village, there are a number of hole-in-the-wall spots that advertise sushi at 50 percent off.

Exam asks students to apply critical thinking skills to real-life situations (PBS NewsHour)
A new report finds that U.S. students’ financial literacy is only average compared to students worldwide. American students also don’t do any better on other international tests which assess math, reading and science skills.

Madigan's office to take aim at student loan scams (Springfield State Journal-Register)
CHICAGO — Illinois' attorney general plans to announce legal action against what her office says are new student loan debt scams. A statement from Lisa Madigan's office says she'll provide details today about planned lawsuits. The statement provided few details. But it did say one target was a company based in Chicago.

UIS needs more student housing, chancellor says (Springfield State Journal-Register)
The University of Illinois Springfield needs more student housing as soon as possible, Chancellor Susan Koch says. Private development, she said, appears to be the fastest route. In an interview with The State Journal-Register, Koch said campus housing was at 93 percent capacity with a little more than 1,100 students last fall, and space is expected to be at least as tight this fall. Read more:

Union leader derides Obama education chief (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
The president of the nation's second-largest teachers union said Friday that President Barack Obama's education chief has turned his back on the concerns of educators and parents, but she stopped short of calling for his ouster.

Everest College's fate renews debate over for-profit colleges (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
Jeremiah Hood is upbeat for a man who will be cleaning out his office in a year’s time. He’s president of Everest College in Earth City, and news has just come from the corporate office that his campus will be closing.

A Tale of ‘Too Big to Fail’ in Higher Education (The New York Times)
For the last two years, the City College of San Francisco has operated in the shadow of imminent death.

Flunking Out, at a Price (The New York Times)
In the years before the mortgage crisis, financial regulators often looked the other way as banks and other lenders pursued reckless activities that cost investors, taxpayers and borrowers billions of dollars. When trouble hit, these regulators had to scramble to fix the mess that their inertia had helped create.

Companies That Offer Help With Student Loans Often Predatory, Officials Say (The New York Times)
The debt settlement industry is finding a gold mine of new clients among those with college loans — and coming under scrutiny by the Illinois attorney general, Lisa Madigan, above, and others.

SIU Board of Trustees taking aim at student fees (The Southern Illinoisan)
Existing student fees can no longer be assured safe haven at SIU. After approving a new student media fee and increasing the intercollegiate athletic fee in June, the SIU Board of Trustees served notice that each of the school's fees will be analyzed to determine which ones continue to serve their original purpose.

SIU in no hurry to name a permanent chancellor (The Southern Illinoisan)
SIU's search for a permanent chancellor hasn't taken shape yet, and it may not for some time. With Paul Sarvela in place as acting chancellor, President Randy Dunn and the Board of Trustees are in no hurry to speed up the process of finding a permanent chancellor

So, what does a chancellor do? (The Southern Illinoisan)
SIU has appointed Paul Sarvela as its acting chancellor, but the role of university chancellor may not be well understood by all Southern Illinoisans.

Most with college STEM degrees go to work in other fields, survey finds (The Washington Post)
People with bachelor’s degrees in science, technology, engineering and math are more likely than other college graduates to have a job, but most of them don’t work in STEM occupations, according to a U.S. Census Bureau report released Thursday.

AFT calls for Education Secretary Duncan to submit to ‘improvement’ plan or resign (The Washington Post)
Education Secretary Arne Duncan’s relations with the country’s largest teachers unions — which collectively have more than 4 million members — keep getting worse. Earlier this month, the nation’s largest teachers union called for him to resign. On Sunday, the second-largest teachers union passed a resolution that stopped short of a direct call for him to quit but urged President Obama to put Duncan on an “improvement plan.”

In Moody’s U.S. college credit ratings, downgrades far outnumber upgrades (The Washington Post)
Howard University’s credit rating by Moody’s Investors Service fell this month for the second time in the past year, largely because of concerns about money troubles at its hospital.

A cheaper, faster version of a college degree (USA TODAY)
No one appears quite ready to dismiss the value of a college degree, but cheaper, faster alternatives are gaining credibility in the workplace.

July 11, 2014

Quote of the day:
“There is no end to education. It is not that you read a book, pass an examination, and finish with education. The whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning.”
Jiddu Krishnamurti

ISU solar car team ready to run in the sun (Bloomington Pantagraph)
The Illinois State University solar car team hasn't seen much sun lately.

Tuition and Fees Rise, but Cost of Living—by Colleges’ Estimate—Falls (Chronicle of Higher Education)
As usual, the U.S. Department of Education is a bit behind when it comes to data.

Research Shows U.S. Students ‘Average’ in Terms of Financial Literacy (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
American education must evolve to ensure that students are better able to navigate an increasingly complex financial landscape — one that they will traverse from the moment they take out their first student loans until their sunset years when they must tap their retirement funds to survive.

Exam asks students to apply critical thinking skills to real-life situations (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
A new report finds that U.S. students’ financial literacy is only average compared to students worldwide. American students also don’t do any better on other international tests which assess math, reading and science skills.

House Starts In On HEA (Inside Higher Ed)
The U.S. House education committee on Thursday advanced a package of legislation that would boost federal support of competency-based education, overhaul how cost information and other data is provided to prospective college students, and require more counseling for federal student loan borrowers. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

State Higher Ed Spending on the Rise (Inside Higher Ed)
States are poised to provide 3.6 percent more in higher education operating support in 2015 than they did in 2014, an informal survey by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities shows Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Trustees delve into financial issues (McDonough County, The Voice)
Spoon River College trustees got a better idea of what was on the horizon for SRC's 2015 fiscal year budget, among other items, during the board's day-long, semi-annual planning retreat in Macomb Tuesday. Read more:

Do Higher-Ed Policies Make It Harder for Low-Income College Students to Graduate? (National Journal)
The golden image of college students walking brick-paved paths to attend small classes in ivy-covered buildings hasn't matched the reality of higher education for a while now.

Next Research Park building may include apartments (News-Gazette)
Living quarters may be coming to the University of Illinois Research Park.

UIS names Kabbes associate A.D. (Springfield State Journal-Register)
The University of Illinois Springfield has hired Paul Kabbes as its associate athletic director for external operations. Read more:

NIU forms sexual assault task force (Springfield State Journal-Register)
Northern Illinois University has formed a task force to address concerns about sexual assaults on campus. Read more:

Students paying extra for business skills they say they haven’t learned on campus (The Hechinger Report)
Ben Wei was already paying hefty tuition to earn a sociology degree from Bowdoin College, which charged nearly $57,000 at the time, but worried his classes weren’t teaching him skills he needed in the workplace.

The Common Core difference, from a teacher’s perspective (The Hechinger Report)
In 2012 I moved from Mississippi to New York City to teach at a charter elementary school in Harlem.

State retirees await insurance premium refunds (The Southern Illinoisan)
There's no timeline yet for the return of nearly $23 million in health insurance premiums that the Illinois Supreme Court has recently ruled belong to state retirees.

Most with college STEM degrees go to work in other fields, survey finds (The Washington Post)
People with bachelor’s degrees in science, technology, engineering and math are more likely than other college graduates to have a job, but most of them don’t work in STEM occupations, according to a U.S. Census Bureau report released Thursday.

UMUC studies ideas for restructuring amid steep enrollment declines (The Washington Post)
University of Maryland University College, the nation’s largest online public university, is weighing ideas to restructure its operations in response to steep enrollment declines in a hotly competitive market.

In Moody’s U.S. college credit ratings, downgrades far outnumber upgrades (The Washington Post)
Howard University’s credit rating from Moody’s Investors Service fell this month for the second time in the past year, largely on concerns about money woes at its hospital.

July 10, 2014

Quote of the day:
“Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Others stay for awhile, leave their footprints on our hearts and we are never, ever the same.”
Flavia Weedn

Lindenwood-Belleville announces plans for major dining hall renovations (Belleville News-Democrat)
Lindenwood University-Belleville, which is nearing completion of the construction of its second new dormitory in the last year, soon will begin extensive renovations to the campus dining hall. Read more here:

Durbin urges students to avoid Everest College (Chicago Sun-Times)
The six for-profit Everest College campuses in the Chicago suburbs are for sale, the Department of Education is now overseeing the parent company under an agreement effective Tuesday and Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., is urging students to not enroll in these schools.

FBI raids on Concept Schools included Rogers Park school, Des Plaines offices (Chicago Sun-Times)
FBI raids targeting Concept Schools included the national charter-school operator’s Des Plaines headquarters and a school in Rogers Park.

One Professor Schemes to Keep Colleges in the Web’s Fast Lane (Chronicle of Higher Education)
William F. Baker has no quarrel with net neutrality, the principle that says all Internet traffic should be treated equally regardless of substance or source. He’s all for it—in the abstract.

Senate Committee Has Tough Questions for NCAA Leader (Chronicle of Higher Education)
Less than a month after testifying in a federal antitrust case challenging his organization, Mark Emmert, president of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, faced tough questions on Wednesday from U.S. senators about the state of big-time college sports.

Smaller Share of Freshmen Stick It Out to Sophomore Year, Report Says (Chronicle of Higher Education)
The share of students who were still enrolled at any college in their second fall term has slipped slightly in the past few years, according to a report released on Thursday by the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center.

U of I to test medical model for poor children on the South and West sides (Crain's Chicago Business)
The University of Illinois is receiving a $19.6 million federal grant to test a medical care model that focuses on poor children and young adults with chronic conditions such as asthma and diabetes

Canine study uses computer games (Daily Herald)
In a research lab at Illinois Wesleyan University, Cleo nose -- er, knows -- the score.

Research Shows U.S. Students ‘Average’ in Terms of Financial Literacy (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
American education must evolve to ensure that students are better able to navigate an increasingly complex financial landscape — one that they will traverse from the moment they take out their first student loans until their sunset years when they must tap their retirement funds to survive.

Colleges Get Financial Boost in Assisting First-Generation Students (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
Juniata College already had started a program to track the academic progress of first-generation students before they received a Walmart grant through the Council of Independent Colleges.

Low-Income Students’ Success in College Starts in High School (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
In The New York Times Magazine cover story, Paul Tough addressed the obstacles facing disadvantaged students head on.

Science Program Brings Japanese High School Students To Springfield (Google News)
A national science program on the other side of the world brings Japanese high school students to the University of Illinois Springfield today.

Non-Tenure-Track Faculty Unionize at U. Illinois (Inside Higher Ed)
The Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board has certified a union for nearly 500 non-tenure track faculty members at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Palmer chancellor responds to college's discrimination ruling (Quad-City Times)
On June 27, 2014, the Iowa Supreme Court handed down a decision arising from an Aug. 1, 2005, Davenport Civil Rights Commission disability discrimination charge filed by Aaron Cannon against the College.

People still flock to smell EIU's 'corpse flower' (Springfield State Journal-Register)
With its death-like odor you'd think nobody would want to stop and smell the so-called corpse flower.

Acting chancellor named at SIUC (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
Longtime Southern Illinois University Carbondale administrator Paul D. Sarvela was named as the school's acting chancellor Tuesday.

SIU Med School receives research grant (The Southern Illinoisan)
A research scientist at SIU School of Medicine has received a Michelson Grant to pursue an innovative approach to nonsurgical animal sterilization.

SIU med students honor local physician as Mentor of the Year (The Southern Illinoisan)
Family medicine physician Dr. Anad Salem was chosen as Mentor of the Year by first-year students at SIU School of Medicine.

U.S. colleges have worked to address ties to slavery, Confederacy (The Washington Post)
With Washington and Lee University’s announcement Tuesday that it will remove historic Confederate battle flags from the main chamber of Lee Chapel and its acknowledgement of regret for the school’s ties to slavery, the college in Lexington, Va., joined numerous other U.S. colleges that have worked to address their ties to slavery and the Confederacy

July 9, 2014

Quote of the day:
“There must be more to life than having everything.”
Maurice Sendak

In a Fight for More Funds, Professors Quantify Colleges’ Neglect of Instruction (Chronicle of Higher Education)
The humble calculator has emerged as a powerful weapon for faculty members battling administrators over spending.

Texas Makes an Appalling Mess of Education ‘Reform’ (Chronicle of Higher Education)
Another year, another ham-handed attempt by a governing board to fire a successful public-university president.

Harper College budget adjusts spending with enrollment dip (Daily Herald)
Harper College officials have prepared a 2015 balanced budget that reflects a dip in enrollment and small tuition increase.

ISU to credit for Illinois Innovation Award (Daily Vidette)
Innovation can mean different things to different people, but when it comes to the state of Illinois, the Education Commission of the State (ECS) seems to be in agreement.

HistoryMakers Collection Finds Home at Library of Congress (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
Preservation of The HistoryMakers, the single largest archival collection of African-American oral histories, is now assured after its acquisition by the Library of Congress.

Low-Income Students’ Success in College Starts in High School (Diverse Issues in Higher Education)
In The New York Times Magazine cover story, Paul Tough addressed the obstacles facing disadvantaged students head on.

Education key to switchgrass market growth (Herald & Review)
Most farmers still aren't totally convinced that switching to growing warm season grasses is a viable alternative to traditional crops in their fields.

Study: Women, Blacks most likely to leave STEM Careers (Inside Higher Ed)
One in five women and one in five black Ph.D. recipients in science, technology, engineering or math leave those fields for careers outside STEM, according to a new report from the American Institutes for Research. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Seeking New Models for Public Urban Universities (Inside Higher Ed)
Seven public urban universities have been selected to receive $225,000 grants each to support the development and testing of new models for the sector, dealing with issues such as improved student success and cost efficiencies. Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Letter: Important lessons from great teacher (News-Gazette)
My mother was a school teacher in the Unit 4 school district for 28 years. So I believe that I might have a little perspective about educating our kids.

How A Text Message Could Revolutionize Student Aid (NPR)
Every year, more than a million students don't complete the FAFSA — the main federal student-loan application.

Branstad calls regent funding revamp 'overdue' (Quad-City Times)
Gov. Terry Branstad on Tuesday applauded the Iowa Board of Regents for tackling a "long overdue" revamp of the funding formula by which state appropriations are divided up among the state's three public universities.

Editorial: Lessons of a For-Profit College Collapse (The New York Times)
For-profit colleges are lobbying hard to weaken rules proposed by the Obama administration that would deny federal aid to career training programs that burden students with crippling debt and worthless credentials.

Sarvela named acting chancellor (The Southern Illinoisan)
The SIU Board of Trustees didn't have to look far to find an acting chancellor. The board met Tuesday and unanimously approved SIU Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Paul Sarvela as the school's acting chancellor

Survey shows most colleges lack data on campus sex assaults, Sen. McCaskill says (The Washington Post)
Most colleges and universities lack accurate information about the number of sex assaults on their campuses, and many fail to encourage students to report such violence, according to a report Wednesday from a Senate Democrat.

$240,000 Isn’t Enough?! Why Liberal Arts Majors Are Paying Extra to Learn Job Skills (TIME)
Employers want graduates who are better prepped for the work world, but colleges have been slow to respond.

10 states with the most student debt (USA TODAY)
Average student debt levels have skyrocketed in recent years, reaching nearly $30,000 in 2012 from $18,650 in 2004.

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