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News Links | March 21, 2017

March 21, 2017 by SBCTC Communications

System News | Opinion

$650K grant to help low-income EvCC students in STEM studies

Everett Community College has received a grant from the National Science Foundation to help low-income students study science and technology subjects. The grant, totaling just under $650,000, will be used for tuition and other support and to conduct a study on how that support helps those students succeed. For the next five years, 15 students enrolling in the college’s summer STEM Bridge program will be awarded $5,000 scholarships. The STEM Bridge program enrolls high school seniors from low-income families in 12 credits of science, technology, engineering and math courses during the summer quarter.
Everett Herald, March 21, 2017

A second chance: Local program teaches female inmates how to code

Computer programming and specifically coding, continues to be hot job. Thousands of positions are open in Washington state. The problem from employers is that there aren’t enough qualified applicants. But a program that teaches female inmates how to code, is hoping to fill that gap along with giving them a second chance in life. For those in the program, this is an opportunity to learn from past mistakes. ... Teaching female inmates to code is a collaborative effort from Microsoft volunteers, the Washington state Department of Corrections, Tacoma Community College and a non-profit called Unloop.
Q13 Fox, March 20, 2017

Students showcase construction skills in project to help the homeless

Construction trades students at the Pierce County Skills Center are among at least 20 teams of high school and college students from across the state who are busy building “tiny house” shelters for the homeless this month. Their projects are part of a statewide competition that takes place on the Capitol Campus in Olympia on Monday March 27. Other teams from Pierce County come from Rogers High School and Bates Technical College.
The News Tribune, March 20, 2017

Edmonds Community College offers first bachelor’s degree

Edmonds Community College is set to offer its first bachelor’s degree option this fall. The school is starting a bachelor of applied science in child, youth and family studies. Instructors and administrators who planned the program say it’s a degree students can take with them into two main fields: human and social services, or early childhood education.
Everett Herald, March 20, 2017

Kirkland college students recognized by national organizations for academic achievements

Two students from Lake Washington Institute of Technology (LWTech) in Kirkland have been recognized for their academic achievements by two national organizations. Chris Osler has been named to the Phi Theta Kappa All-Washington Academic Team. Phi Theta Kappa is the International Honor Society for two-year colleges. ... Lynette Clemens was recognized as the Student of the Year by the Washington State Chefs Association (WSCA), a local chapter of the American Culinary Federation (ACF).
Kirkland Reporter, March 20, 2017

Edmonds and Everett CC students earn All-Washington honors

Two students each from Edmonds Community College and Everett Community College will be recognized for their scholastic achievement and community service at a ceremony at noon March 23 at South Puget Sound Community College, in Olympia. The local students are among 63 of the state’s top scholars, representing the state’s 34 community and technical colleges. They will receive recognition as members of the All-Washington Academic Team, which comes with a $250 scholarship from KeyBank of Washington.
Everett Herald, March 20, 2017

Time running out for Yemeni students at Edmonds college

He said it is a daunting waiting game. A dozen Yemeni students attending Edmonds Community College are trying to piece together a future in the United States that is still “in the clouds,” said Yunes Alhobane, 18. Come June 23, their visas expire and the money they’ve been living on dries up. In 2014, the group was chosen from hundreds of Yemeni students for the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study program, promising a year in an American high school. The U.S. Department of State and the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs launched the program after Sept. 11. The scholarships are awarded to students from countries with large Muslim populations.
Everett Herald, March 20, 2017

Meet George Thomas, 2017 distinguished Pierce College alum

As a member of the military working full time while raising a family, George Thomas did not have a lot of free time to pursue his education back in 1979. Based at Fort Lewis, he knew that earning a college degree was a goal he needed to achieve to advance in his career. He began researching colleges that had a presence on Fort Lewis’ education center, with the goal to find an affordable college with flexible schedules, small class sizes and dedicated professors. Pierce College (then called Fort Steilacoom Community College) stood out to Thomas because it was local and catered to the needs of the military community.
The Suburban Times, March 20, 2017 

OC markets itself to international students

Maria Politi took notes on the formula her engineering physics teacher wrote on the whiteboard. The lesson, about magnetic fields, was complicated enough, even if your first language is English. Politi, from Italy, is studying college-level material in English, which she’s mastered over two years at Olympic College. Like other international students at the community college, Politi wanted to expand her horizons.
Kitsap Sun, March 19, 2017

Opinion: Your gift could change a life

By Chris Bailey, president of Lower Columbia College. If you could chart a course for the future of this community, what would it look like? Would there be plentiful jobs for those who need them? Locally accessible healthcare? An engaged citizenry to discuss and solve problems, together? These are the hallmarks of a community that values education. ... On behalf of Lower Columbia College (LCC), I would like to thank The Daily News for supporting the future of Cowlitz County with the Students in Need campaign. One hundred percent of contributions raised through the campaign go to the LCC Student Success Fund.
Longview Daily News, March 19, 2017

New tech apprenticeship racks up 1,000 applicants, first two success stories

A new, federally funded apprenticeship program aimed at diversifying the tech workforce in Washington has drawn interest from more than 1,000 applicants in just a few months. And two of its earliest participants have already started yearlong, paid apprenticeships. The program, called Apprenti, is being run by an industry trade association, the Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA). ... Shawn Farrow is one of the early participants. Farrow graduated from The Evergreen State College in 2009 and had a hard time finding work because of the recession. He took a job with a moving company and met a lot of people relocating to the area in the tech industry — a clear sign that this was the fastest-growing industry around here, he said. Farrow, who is biracial, went back to school and earned a two-year associate degree at Renton Technical College in computer science.
The Seattle Times, March 19, 2017

Student Success Fund provides an extra boost for LCC students

If it weren’t for Lower Columbia College’s Student Success Fund, it would have been difficult, if not impossible, for students Kayla Curtis and Scott Houston to finish their degrees. Founded in 2013, the fund provides financial assistance to students most at risk of abandoning their education due to miscellaneous expenses. Most gifts average less than $500, but they keep students on track for something more precious: a college education.
Longview Daily News, March 18, 2017

CPTC hosts mechatronics for military info session

A Mechatronics degree can be a passport to a bright career for transitioning service members, and that was the message at the Mechatronics for Military Info Session and Lab Tour hosted by Clover Park Technical College’s Mechatronics program March 10. Transitioning members leaving or retiring from the U.S. Armed Forces typically undergo briefings, attend employment network workshops, get trained on interview strategies and techniques as well as resume writing, and formulate their transition plans with a counselor. Recognizing this, CPTC’s Connecting Competencies to Employers (C2E) team designed the event to introduce the Fundamental Skills for Manufacturing and Engineering (FSME) and Mechatronics programs. In these programs, service members utilize skills they have already trained for while in the service and apply them to several in-demand and well-paying jobs in manufacturing.
The Suburban Times, March 18, 2017

Opinion: From jail to a master’s degree: the power of education

By Omari Amili, author of the forthcoming book “Transforming Society’s Failure.” He works at South Seattle College assisting people from disadvantaged backgrounds in reaching their educational and career goals. I was raised in poverty by drug addicted parents. I had pretty much no one who could be a model of how to be successful in life — until I found the power of education. ... When I started at Pierce College in September 2008, I had a very rough academic background. Somehow I was able to persist through many obstacles that come along with having been an incarcerated, GED carrying, broke black male, first-generation college student. I was also able to persist despite becoming a single father of two small children after my children’s mother went to prison.
The Seattle Times, March 17, 2017

Green River College announces four finalists in presidential search

Green River College has named four finalists in the search for its next president. ... Utpal K. Goswami, Suzanne M. Johnson, Kenneth G. Lawson and Elliot Stern will each visit Green River’s campus for a day during the week of April 10 to meet with various constituent groups, tour the campus and interview with the Board of Trustees. ... Lawson is the vice president for instruction at Skagit Valley College in Mount Vernon. ... Lawson was dean of humanities and social sciences at Seattle Central College and dean of equity and social justice/social sciences at Shoreline Community College. ... Stern is the vice president of instruction at Lake Washington Institute of Technology in Kirkland. ... Stern changed career paths in 2003 and joined the ranks of biology faculty at Everett Community College, where he later became dean of Allied Health.
Auburn Reporter, March 17, 2017

Centralia College programs launch students into the workforce

Students in two programs at Centralia College have not yet graduated, but the majority of them have already been hired on by Intel, an American multinational corporation and technology company. The mechatronics and electronics, robotics and automation programs in all have 13 students this year. Of those students, the eight that interviewed with Intel all received job offers, with an additional student who was hired at Boeing. Each year, Intel makes a trip to the Centralia College campus to interview students. In years past, the program has had an employment rate of 100 percent.
Centralia Chronicle, March 17, 2017

Diversity in education

Diversity is a broad word at Edmonds Community College (ECC). So diverse that it even covers former inmates. With 46 percent being students of color (over 26 percent are Asian Pacific Islanders), ECC is one of the most diverse colleges in Washington state. President Jean Hernandez said, “Given the current political climate, diversity shouldn’t just be focusing on ethnic backgrounds. Religious backgrounds and where people are coming from…” are part of this diverse community. “It’s the many backgrounds that make us a stronger country,” she said. To reach students of different needs, ECC offers programs and grants for gender-specific students, low-income students, first generation students going to college, as well as veterans. Currently, there are about 200 veteran students enrolled at ECC.
Northwest Asian Weekly, March 17, 2017

Yakima Valley College plans to purchase 16th and Nob Hill retail property for expansion

More than a year ago, Yakima Valley College President Linda Kaminski received a phone call asking if the school was interested in leasing a nearby former shopping center at the southwest corner 16th Avenue and Nob Hill Boulevard. Kaminski said she told the property owner that leasing wasn’t a realistic option, and the call ended there. But the college kept an eye on the property to see whether the owner would be willing to sell. The answer turned out to be yes: Pending necessary approval from a state board, Yakima Valley College plans to purchase the property. Next Thursday in Olympia, the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges will consider YVC’s request to purchase the property at 1606, 1608 and 1704 W. Nob Hill Boulevard for $3.77 million.
Yakima Herald, March 17, 2017

Congrats to CPTC’s two All-Washington Academic honorees

A pair of Clover Park Technical College students will be recognized by Washington Governor Jay Inslee as part of the 2017 All-Washington Academic Team next week at South Puget Sound Community College. Environmental Sciences & Technology student Jessica Bracken and Pharmacy Technician student AnneMarie Mafi earned the honor for their academic high achievement.
The Suburban Times, March 17, 2017

RTC student selected to All-USA Community College Academic Team

Mohamed Abdullahi, a computer science student at Renton Technical College (RTC), has been selected as one of 20 community college students in the nation to be a member of the All-USA Community College Academic Team. Along with the recognition as an outstanding student and an engaged leader, Abdullahi will receive a $5,000 scholarship supported by the Follett Higher Education Group.
Renton Reporter, March 16, 2017

Trends | Horizons | Education

Study on low-income applicants and admissions

When college admissions officers have more information about the high schools attended by low-income applicants, those applicants are more likely to be admitted, according to a study published in the new issue of Educational Researcher. In the study, 311 admissions officers from competitive-admissions colleges reviewed fictional applications from students with different socioeconomic backgrounds, and with different levels of information about the high schools.
Inside Higher Ed, March 21, 2017

Minority students at greater risk of sexual assault

Not only are racial, sexual and gender minority groups more likely to be victims of sexual assault, students who consider their colleges inclusive and tolerant are less likely to be victims, two new complementary studies found. Published recently in the Journal of Interpersonal Violence and Prevention Science, the studies reveal how populations with intersecting minority identities may be at greater risk of sexual assault, emphasizing the need for more sexual assault research and prevention and treatment programs that address specific marginalized groups.
Inside Higher Ed, March 20, 2017

Study on challenges for veterans in classrooms

A new study from the University of California, Riverside, shows that student veterans attending rural community colleges struggle with integrating into campus communities. The study surveyed 211 student veterans and learned from 23 survey respondents that they struggled with the aftermath of trauma exposure, including sleep disturbance, hypervigilance, irritable or aggressive behavior, and difficulty concentrating.
Inside Higher Ed, March 17, 2017

Opinion: Give every Washington student a chance to learn computer science

Our working class — young and old, rural and urban, Democrat and Republican — is worried about being left behind. With the accelerating pace of technological change, economists warn about job losses due to automation. For Washington state, we see this not only as a challenge, but as an opportunity: the opportunity to prepare for the careers of the future. Two years ago our state led the nation in allocating $2 million to expand access to K-12 computer science. Just more than 10 percent of Washington’s students now have access to learn computer science in schools that previously didn’t offer any classes in the subject. We’ve proven this strategy works, and it’s time to double-down.
The Seattle Times, March 16, 2017

State Superintendent talks assessments, education funding

State School Superintendent Chris Reykdal is “all for” testing standards in schools, but he says they shouldn’t determine whether students graduate from high school and receive their diploma. ... Reykdal addressed a group of about 50 Kelso and Longview educators and administrators for about an hour and a half Wednesday afternoon. Among other topics, he called for boosting the state’s commitment to school funding and predicted what educators can expect from the Trump Administration.
Longview Daily News, March 16, 2017

When allowed extra time with books, jailed youths read and read — and read

Books, those seemingly harmless rectangular objects that can open a window into other worlds, are viewed as potential weapons at some juvenile lockups. Meaning that the young inmates inside may be permitted to read only during prescribed class time, and rarely in their cells at night. That seemed counterproductive to David Domenici, who runs a nonprofit dedicated to encouraging more creativity in education at youth camps and prisons. So he pitched Scholastic on the idea of a nationwide read-a-thon, hoping that a bit of competition would jump-start the notion of reading for pleasure among kids often considered unreachable. The result is Unbound, now in its third year.
The Seattle Times, March 16, 2017

Student loan defaults rising, study finds

The stock market is up, unemployment is down but things aren’t rosy for all Americans. A new analysis of government data by the Consumer Federation of America found that the number of Americans in default on their student loans jumped by nearly 17 percent last year. As of the end of 2016, there were 4.2 million Federal Direct Loan borrowers in default, meaning they’ve not made a payment in more than 270 days. That’s up from 3.6 million at the end of 2015.
The Seattle Times, March 14, 2017

A for-profit-college company embraces its technology-focused past and its evolving future

Lisa W. Wardell, the new president and chief executive officer of the DeVry Education Group, talks about changes in the regulatory environment she expects under the Trump administration, what she, as an education outsider, is still learning about “the complexities around learning science,” and why DeVry University recently settled several legal issues with federal enforcement bodies. “We wanted to get that behind us,” she says.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 14, 2017

Politics | Local, State, National

GOP budget would reject state worker raises to help pay for schools

Republican legislative leaders released a new two-year budget proposal Tuesday that aims to fix how Washington state pays for schools, but would trim spending elsewhere to make that happen. The $43-billion spending plan released by Senate GOP leaders would impose a new statewide property tax to pay for education, while reducing local school district levies to offset some of the costs to taxpayers. Overall, the Senate plan would add about $1.8 billion to the state’s K-12 school system over the next two years. To help find that money, the GOP plan would reject nearly all of the collective bargaining agreements Gov. Jay Inslee’s office reached with 38 employee unions, and instead award state workers flat raises of $500 per year for the next two years.
The News Tribune, March 21, 2017

Presidents call on Trump to protect Dreamers

More than 560 college and university presidents have signed a letter urging President Trump to keep in place protections for “Dreamers,” a term for immigrants who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children — many of whom are now college students. Under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, created by President Obama, more than 700,000 Dreamers have been able to obtain work permits and temporary protection from the risk of deportation. During the campaign, Trump called for an end to DACA, but he has since softened his tone, saying he would like to “work something out” for Dreamers, without offering specifics.
Inside Higher Ed, March 21, 2017

Canada's moment

At a time when many American universities are reporting declines in applications from international students, some universities north of the border are seeing increases on the magnitude of 20 percent or more. At the University of Waterloo, in Ontario, undergraduate international applications are up by 25 percent and graduate international applications have increased by 41 percent. At McMaster University, also in Ontario, international applications have increased by 34.4 percent compared to the same time last year.
Inside Higher Ed, March 20, 2017

Proposed NIH cuts stun and anger

The White House budget proposal released last week would have devastating effects on science and technology in the United States as well as the education of the next generation of researchers, say organizations representing scientists and research institutions. The budget document from the Trump administration — a broad outline of the full budget due later this spring — calls for reducing the funding of the National Institutes of Health by $5.8 billion, or nearly 20 percent. And it calls for eliminating or slashing spending on other research programs at many other federal agencies. No specific numbers were released for the National Science Foundation.
Inside Higher Ed, March 20, 2017

Proposal in Olympia aims to take some of the confusion out of student loans

College students have long complained that it’s hard to keep track of how much they owe when they start taking out loans to pay for school. Now, a new bill in the state Legislature aims to make those loans more transparent. The bill, Senate Bill 5022, passed unanimously in the Senate on March 1 and is now in the House Higher Education Committee, where it’s scheduled for a hearing March 21. It’s also been endorsed by the Washington Student Association, an organization of student-government leaders on 10 campuses who lobby the Legislature and do grass-roots organizing. The bill, one of four student-loan bills being debated this session, would give college students a snapshot of the total amount of loans they have received so far, tell when the loans will come due and show what the likely payment will be.
The Seattle Times, March 20, 2017

Capitol Dispatch: State could say goodbye to 'high-stakes' tests for high school graduation

Washington is one of four states in the country that require high school students to pass a single standardized test to graduate, also known as “high-stakes” testing, said Longview Superintendent Dan Zorn. Only 12 states use some form of a testing requirement, he said. House Bill 1046, sponsored by state Rep. Drew MacEwen, R-Union, would essentially removing high-stakes testing as a graduation requirement. Although the test would still exist, students wouldn’t be required to pass it.
Longview Daily News, March 18, 2017

Opinion: Do not renege on promise to Dreamers

Daniel Ramirez Medina, a 24-year-old from Des Moines, is a so-called Dreamer. When he signed up for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) program two years ago, the U.S. government gave him the same promise given to 750,000 other DACA recipients. If they arrived before the age of 16, don’t get in trouble and go to school or work, they would enjoy a “lawful presence” here, if not full legal residency. Ramirez did all that. ... The Ramirez case is now a test of the Trump administration’s treatment of Dreamers. President Trump could revoke the DACA program. He hasn’t, perhaps because a broad majority of Americans support providing a safe haven to these law-abiding people brought to the country illegally as children. Trump should leave DACA in place, honor the promises to enrollees, and his administration should let Ramirez go.
The Seattle Times, March 17, 2017

Protecting Pell? Critics say budget wouldn't

The document outlining the Trump administration's first budget, released in a bare-bones outline Thursday, states that the White House plan "safeguards" the Pell Grant program and would leave the key financial aid source for needy students on "sound financial footing for the next decade." But many advocates for low-income students say the opposite is true. By taking about a third of the program's multi-billion-dollar surplus and cutting other college access programs, they assert, the new administration would jeopardize Pell's long-term sustainability and harm the prospects of low-income students.
Inside Higher Ed, March 17, 2017

Work-study worries

Many experts on the program agree it needs changing with a greater emphasis on low-income students. But few agree that the large cut being sought by the Trump administration will help.
Inside Higher Ed, March 17, 2017

Congressional leaders call for briefing on IRS tool

Top leaders of the congressional education committees from both parties wrote to Betsy DeVos, the U.S. secretary of education, Thursday to get answers on the "cause and scope" of this month's shutdown of a financial aid data tool by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, which cited the vulnerability of student data to identity thieves. (The Wall Street Journal reported that an inspector general for the IRS is investigating whether the tool was being used for fraud.) In addition, the Oversight Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives' top Republican and Democrat joined a bipartisan group of eight other members in writing to the U.S. Department of Education and IRS to request documents and information about the shutdown.
Inside Higher Ed, March 17, 2017

A promise with limits

The free community college programs picking up steam across the country generally allow students to study whatever they want. But a new free community college initiative in Arkansas is looking to push students into the areas where the state has work force needs. To some free-college advocates, the initiative is more restrictive and limiting than other Promise programs, as the efforts are called. Last week, Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson signed an act creating the Arkansas Future Grant, or ArFuture. Hutchinson is Republican and both houses of the state's Legislature are led by Republicans. The first grants would be available this fall.
Inside Higher Ed, March 17, 2017

Where will the government look for thousands of new border agents? On college campuses

At a University of Maryland University College career fair last week, the scene was familiar: Students and recent alumni of the flagship’s online college, dressed in their professional best with blazers, name tags, and business cards, lingered before tables of recruiters, who gave out free merchandise and spoke of job opportunities. The longest line of job seekers was at the U.S. State Department’s table — ironic, since hiring at the department is still stalled under a partial freeze signed by President Trump.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 17, 2017

U.S. rescinds guidance on collection fees

The Trump administration on Thursday withdrew 2015 guidance issued by the Obama administration that barred student loan guarantee agencies from charging collection fees to defaulted borrowers who start repaying their loans quickly. The Education Department's notice said the Obama-era guidance — which endorsed a position taken by a federal appeals court in a case ultimately settled by USA Funds — "would have benefited from public input on the issues."
Inside Higher Ed, March 17, 2017

What Trump’s budget outline would mean for higher ed

President Trump laid out the spending priorities for his administration on Thursday, releasing a budget "blueprint" that includes a $9-billion cut for the U.S. Department of Education, more than 13 percent, as well as decreases at several agencies that provide money for academic research, such as the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. The administration’s outline also calls for eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The deep reductions in discretionary spending fall on nearly every executive agency, in order to offset more than $50 billion in increases for the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, and Veterans Affairs.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 16, 2017

Revenue projections for Washington higher than expected

Lawmakers on Thursday received a revenue forecast that shows they have a little more money to work with as the Senate and House prepare to release their budget proposals in the coming weeks. The latest Office of Financial Management numbers that were released at a meeting of the state Economic and Revenue Forecast Council shows found that the state's revenue collections through the middle of 2019 are expected to increase by about $571 million — with $313 million more than originally forecast for the upcoming 2017-2019 budget and $258 million more for the current two-year budget through the end of June. The projected overall state budget for 2017-19 is expected to be $41.6 billion.
Associated Press, March 16, 2017

No release for detained immigrant: What it means for 800K other DACA recipients

A local man is at the center of a case that could affect 800,000 immigrants illegally brought to the U.S. as children. Daniel Ramirez Medina, 24, was born in Mexico and brought to the US illegally when he was a child.  He’s now lawfully allowed to live, work, and study in the US, but he was arrested and detained more than a month ago.  Tuesday, we learned Ramirez’s story is taking the whole county into uncharted waters. Chief United States Magistrate Judge James P. Donohue ruled Ramirez will be staying in a Tacoma detention center after denying his release.  Ramirez’s lawyers say they will contest that decision. However, his lawyers are claiming victory as their case will be heard in federal court and not in front of an immigration court.  Lawyers say in federal court, a judge will decide whether Ramirez’s arrest and detention violated his constitutional rights.
Q13 Fox, March 14, 2017

Last Modified: 2/9/18 11:37 AM
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