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News Links | May 2, 2017

May 02, 2017 by SBCTC Communications

System News | Opinion

Opinion: Community colleges key to Washington’s economic future

Leaders focused on the jobs of the future, whether in business or government, already know the importance of the training and education available at Washington’s community and technical colleges. It is disappointing that the Legislature, under court pressure to fully fund K-12 schools, seems to be eyeing higher education and early learning for cuts. The state Senate used cuts to community and technical colleges to help balance its proposed biennial budget. The Legislature should be looking for ways to enhance colleges and help more students get a degree or certificate after high school, not using Washington’s higher education system as a rainy-day fund.
The Seattle Times, May 1, 2017

New law helps inmates earn workforce-type college degrees

Taxpayers have long funded programs enabling inmates to get a diploma or learn skills needed to land a job when they get out of prison. Now, some of those tax dollars will be spent helping them earn a college degree while still behind bars. A new law signed by Gov. Jay Inslee authorizes community and technical colleges to provide instruction in certain associate degree programs through a contract with the state Department of Corrections. Once the law takes effect July 23, Edmonds Community College will look to expand its slate of offerings at the Monroe Correctional Complex to include courses for an Associate of Technical Arts degree in business management. ... In Washington, the Department of Corrections and the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges have a long partnership to conduct classes in basic education skills — to help inmates earn a general education development certificate, or GED — as well as vocational education. ... The state partnered with the Seattle Foundation and the Sunshine Lady Foundation and it resulted in the awarding of 47 degrees by Walla Walla Community College at Coyote Ridge Corrections Center and Washington State Penitentiary.
Everett Herald, May 1, 2017

KEDA's 'championship forum' draws a record crowd

Business is booming in Kitsap, due in part to the strategic, guiding efforts of the Kitsap Economic Development Alliance. Finally, Dr. David Mitchell, president of Olympic College, was given a Lifetime Achievement Award, recognizing his longtime collaboration with business leaders in creating relevant academic programs that prepare young people and those who are changing direction in midlife. His unflagging leadership brought WSU and WWU to Kitsap as part of their 2+2 programs.
Kitsap Sun, May 1, 2017

Robots are going to take a lot of jobs — here's what we could do about it

For all the talk of robots replacing humans on the job, in schools and even in bed, students at Everett Community College in Washington state are preparing for a robot future. A steady stream of laid-off workers have come to the college for retraining, says Ryan Davis, the college’s dean since 2013.  Many are in the school’s technology and robotics programs, and the school’s proximity to a large Boeing facility makes the aerospace program a popular one.
Business Insider, April 30, 2017

Opinion: Dr. Christine Johnson: State disinvestment in community colleges hurts economy

Spokane Community College and Spokane Falls Community College have a strong record for producing graduates who land well-paying jobs or transfer to four-year colleges and universities. Each year, Community Colleges of Spokane serves more than 30,000 students with programs ranging from competitive honors transfer degrees to adult basic skills. We are proud of the community and technical college open-door philosophy of providing educational opportunity to all searching to improve their lives. ... To meet the future needs of our students and communities, two-year colleges need an additional investment from the Washington Legislature commensurate with the role we serve: to elevate individuals and communities socially and economically, to invigorate local and regional economies, to build the nation’s workforce that keeps America competitive.
The Spokesman-Review, April 29, 2017

Opinion: Don’t skimp on college need grants; expand them

Culinary students at Clover Park Technical College get serious about a cupcake competition. The state wants at least 70 percent of working-age Washingtonians to have some sort of post-secondary degree or credential by 2023. It will take a larger investment in state need grants to get there. Our region is blessed with a banquet of choices when it comes to higher-ed. Within a 35-mile radius of downtown Tacoma, there are two technical colleges, a half dozen community colleges, a handful of private and public universities, and dozens of certificate programs ranging from machining and manufacturing to massage therapy. ... “It has given me a clear path to the American dream,” Anna Nepomuceno, a North Tacoma mother of three, told our Editorial Board last week. A need grant enabled her to study at Tacoma Community College and will carry her through graduation in June at University of Washington Tacoma.
The News Tribune, April 29, 2017

Spokane woman heading to D.C. to highlight importance of early childhood education

On Sunday, Katie Zobell will load her 23-month-old daughter Paige onto an airplane and fly across the country to speak to lawmakers in Washington, D.C. Zobell, her daughter and husband are one of 50 families – one from each state – addressing lawmakers on Tuesday. She will be highlighting challenges new parents face in the hope of influencing federal legislation around early childhood development funding. ... Zobell’s story focuses primarily on the difficulty and cost of finding quality day care. When Zobell moved to Spokane with her husband, her daughter was 3 months old. The family lives off her part-time job at Gonzaga while her husband attends school at Spokane Falls Community College. Because they didn’t know anyone in Spokane they had to find child care almost immediately. ... Zobell and her husband ended up finding child care at Spokane Falls Community College’s Early Learning Center. She said she was lucky to get a spot there as there is a normally a waiting list.
The Spokesman-Review, April 29, 2017

Tri-Cities joins nationwide fight against climate change

Tri-City area residents joined tens of thousands of people across the nation on Saturday, demanding and strategizing actions to protect the planet. ... About 75 people and several dogs attended the Peoples’ Climate Festival in Richland on the blustery spring day, making signs, listening to music and picking up tips to organize and fight climate change. ... Rick Smith, associate professor of environmental science at Columbia Basin College in Pasco, said he has students, friends and colleagues who are discouraged by attacks on science and worry about climate change.
Tri-City Herald, April 29, 2017

EDC’s free marine trades training update

The San Juan County Economic Development Council Marine Trades Training program was initiated in 2016 to address the gap between trained tradespeople and a desperate need for skilled workers in the maritime industry in the San Juan Islands. This gap has caused a loss of market share to Canadian shipyards and marinas. ... In the first quarter of 2017, the EDC collaborated with Skagit Valley College, our local community college, to build a marine training program that would most benefit local maritime businesses, and “upskill” under-trained workers here, for up to 20 participants.
San Juan Journal, April 29, 2017

Makerspace meeting draws ideas for place in Arlington where innovation happens

City leaders are making progress to site a makerspace in Arlington, meeting with local experts to help decide where a center for innovation might best be located, and the equipment necessary to make it successful. Many questions exist, but like raw material on the bed of a 3D printer, the makerspace idea is starting to take shape, layer by layer. ... Charles Inler, board member and cofounder of the SnoCo Makerspace at Everett’s Paine Field, shared how they built their nonprofit makerspace from the ground up and lessons learned. He said Arlington supporters are on the right track reaching students. His makerspace reached out to Everett High School and is partnering with them on an art program using 3-CAD programming. The “blueprints” will then go to AMTEC at Everett Community College, where their public art will be built.
Arlington Times, April 29, 2017

Gov. Inslee honors local students with visits to MTHS, Edmonds CC

Gov. Jay Inslee and his wife Trudi Inslee had a busy Friday in southern Snohomish County that included visiting Mountlake Terrace High School and Edmonds Community College to hear about successes in programs at both schools. ... After a whirlwind 45-minute visit at Mountlake Terrace High School, Inslee traveled to Edmonds Community College to hear from students who received opportunity grants and to see the school’s Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) building.
My Edmonds News, April 29, 2017

Pierce College It’s Possible Gala raises funds to support student success

The Pierce College Fort Steilacoom Health Education Center was transformed during the It’s Possible Gala on April 22 as the college raised funds to support students in need. The gala was held in honor of Pierce College’s 50th anniversary, and highlighted exceptional alumni whose lives were changed by attending college at Pierce.
The Suburban Times, April 29, 2017

Washington sued over community colleges’ troubled software system

The company that has filed for bankruptcy in the middle of a troubled project to install a new computer software system for Washington’s community colleges is suing the state, claiming it is owed some $13 million. Ciber Inc., a Colorado-based information technology company, filed the claim this month in federal bankruptcy court in Delaware, where it is seeking Chapter 11 reorganization protection from creditors. The company says the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges, which operates 34 colleges around Washington, hasn’t made the final payments due on a contract of nearly $44 million. ... “We remain committed to making this project a success for the three pilot colleges – Tacoma, Spokane and Spokane Falls – and the rest of our colleges,” Laura McDowell said.
The Spokesman-Review, April 28, 2017

Centralia College Foundation Names 2017 Exceptional Faculty Award Winners

The Centralia College Foundation has selected two individuals to receive the 2016-17 Exceptional Faculty Awards. Connie Smejkal and Jeff McQuarrie were selected for their commitment and excellence in their subject areas and their participation in campus activities, according to a press release from the college.
Centralia Chronicle, April 28, 2017

Kilmer: Ethics rules should apply to Congress

When Rep. Derek Kilmer, D-Bremerton, visited Olympic College for a town hall style meeting with students on April 14, one subject led all others: education. “At the national level, I don’t think there’s anyone who’s a stronger supporter of higher education and the students of higher education [than Kilmer],” OC President David Mitchell said.
Kitsap Daily News, April 28, 2017

Rep. DelBene meets with Veterans Advisory Board

Before heading back to Washington, D.C., to address the nation’s budget, First Congressional District Rep. Suzan DelBene met with her recently formed Veterans Advisory Board to discuss issues of importance to veterans and what her office can do to make their lives easier. DelBene, members of her staff and board members discussed military sexual trauma (MST), veteran homelessness, veteran suicide and other difficulties veterans face when they leave the military, at last week’s meeting at Lake Washington Institute of Technology (LWTech) in Kirkland.
Kirkland Reporter, April 28, 2017

South Seattle College’s Aviation Maintenance Technology Program partners with Delta Air Lines

After an extensive evaluation process, Delta Air Lines has selected South Seattle College as an approved partner college in training future aviation maintenance technicians for careers with the global aviation company. South’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certified Aviation Maintenance Technology (AMT) program has been training technicians since the 1970s. Students learn to keep aircrafts in safe flying condition by servicing, repairing and overhauling aircraft and aircraft components based on detailed FAA regulations.
West Seattle Herald, April 28, 2017

Lower Columbia College Foundation receives $335,000 endowment

Just days after Lower Columbia College’s Student Success Fund received a large donation from a local philanthropist, the LCC Foundation Thursday announced another large contribution: a $335,000 endowment from the recently closed Applied Industries Inc. to support students with disabilities.
Longview Daily News, April 28, 2017

When a college degree isn't enough

Last June, Martin Chibwe, a computer-science major, graduated from Evergreen State College, in Olympia, Washington, a liberal-arts campus with a hipster ethos that shuns letter grades and urges exploration (“We don’t tell you what to take,” its website promises). His computer-science courses covered topics like programming, machine learning, and artificial intelligence; Chibwe even did a project on recommendation algorithms for an online library. ... For example, at South Seattle College’s Georgetown campus, the combination of three specific courses within the professional technical-education and instructional-design (training for teaching online) degree program now yields an adult-learning certificate. Next fall, students will be able to earn similar certificates for course sequences within the hospitality management and sustainable building science technology degrees.
The Atlantic, April 27, 2017

Opinion: Fundraising

It’s a standing joke that at private four-year schools, the president reports to the development office. It isn’t literally true, but in some places, it’s close. Community colleges have lagged the rest of higher education in fundraising. In one sense, that’s counterintuitive: a donation goes a lot farther, and comes closer to students, at a community college than at an elite private college, but that doesn’t seem to drive donors. ... A few years ago I saw Lisa Skari, from Highline College, present some findings from her dissertation research, which addressed community college fundraising. She noted the popular myth — still widely held — that says that students who start at a community college and then transfer “upward” will identify with the highest-level school they attended. Her data showed that the myth is simply false, but that falsifying it requires community colleges actually to try. Too many have simply swallowed the myth, and used it as an excuse, consciously or not, for not trying.
Inside Higher Ed, April 26, 2017

Trends | Horizons | Education

‘Volatile’ but growing online ed market

Online enrollment continues to grow as the total number of students in college shrinks. The growth is particularly strong at private nonprofit colleges, report finds.
Inside Higher Ed, May 2, 2017

Suicide and Title IX

Two lawsuits — one involving accused student’s suicide and another about an attempt — have added fire to the continued debate over how colleges handle complaints of sexual assault.
Inside Higher Ed, May 2, 2017

Selective colleges reject qualified Pell recipients

Roughly 86,000 Pell Grant recipients score at or above the median on standardized tests for students at selective colleges but do not attend those institutions, according to a new analysis from Georgetown University's Center on Education and the Workforce. Instead, a majority of Pell recipients attend open-access colleges with relatively low graduation rates, the report found.
Inside Higher Ed, May 2, 2017

The path to higher education with an intellectual disability

The women are two students in the ClemsonLIFE program, which offers two- and four-year certificates to young adults with developmental disabilities who may not otherwise have a path to higher education. ... As is the case for many bright-eyed college-goers, the true, ultimate goal is not a perfect GPA or a resume filled with on-campus leadership positions, but a sense of independence. ... To make that freedom possible for students with intellectual disabilities, the ClemsonLIFE curriculum includes a variety of classes ranging from relationship skills and math to navigation and nutrition. All the while, the students are integrated with the rest of the Clemson population and work both on- and off-campus at places like the stately university Fike Recreation Center, local boutiques, and the Walgreens distribution center.
The Atlantic, May 1, 2017

4 things we don't know about AP tests

This week and next is a national rite of passage for stressed-out overachievers everywhere. Nearly 3 million high school students at 22,000 high schools will be sitting down to take their Advanced Placement exams. ... Recently the AP has boomed. Participation doubled in the last 10 years, and also doubled in the decade before that. The U.S. Education Department's Office of Civil Rights even collects data on who has access to, and enrolls in, AP courses, using it as a measure of educational equity. But (and you knew there was a 'but' coming), "remarkably little independent research has been conducted on the academic benefits of AP."
KNKX, May 1, 2017

Backgrounds and beliefs of college freshmen

For five decades, researchers at the University of California at Los Angeles have surveyed the nation's incoming freshmen to learn more about their backgrounds, views, and expectations. Use this interactive graphic to see how their attitudes and self-images have changed since the 1960s, as measured by UCLA's Cooperative Institutional Research Program, part of the Higher Education Research Institute.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 1, 2017

Students for free speech

The news is full of recent incidents in which students have blocked or attempted to block campus speakers. Students have shouted down or shut down appearances of controversial speakers at Middlebury College, Claremont McKenna College and the University of California, Los Angeles, among other campuses. While the students involved there are on the left, invitations have been rescinded for views favoring abortion rights (an invitation withdrawn at Saint Mary's College in Indiana), and invitations have been protested for speaker views seen as anti-Israel (as in a case at the City University of New York, in which officials are refusing to block an appearance). In much of the public discussion of these incidents, students are portrayed as intolerant of views with which they disagree. Over the weekend, 25 students from about 20 colleges around the country gathered at the University of Chicago to try to start a movement in which students would become leading defenders of free speech on campus — including speech that they find offensive. The students issued a statement Sunday that they plan to urge other students to sign and to abide by.
Inside Higher Ed, May 1, 2017

Yik Yak to shut down

Yik Yak, the once-popular anonymous messaging app, will shut down in the coming weeks, its developers announced Friday. The app was once at the center of several campus controversies, but a series of decisions to limit completely anonymous posting drove many users away. The company behind Yik Yak, once valued at between $300-400 million, in February announced a new group messaging app. Last month, many of its software engineers were hired by the payment solutions provider Square.
Inside Higher Ed, May 1, 2017

Opinion: In a twist, a college lesson at UW on how to fail

A UW lab, called the Resilience Lab, tries to spread the word that losing and winning are linked together. Several professionals at a recent event shared their stories on how they came back from failures.
The Seattle Times, April 30, 2017

Exposure to computers, robots boost STEM interest in young girls, UW study finds

Confidence and laughter for one little girl who just learned how to program a robot. It goes against the long-held stereotype that girls wouldn't be interested in robotics, but a new University of Washington study proves that wrong. Research from the UW's Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences (I-LABS) found when 6-year-old girls participated in a computer-programming activity, they expressed a bigger interest in technology and more positive attitudes about their own skills and abilities than girls who didn't try it. The study suggests both the need and opportunity for teaching computer science as early as elementary school.  Introducing those concepts and skills to young girls can help boost their confidence and spark their interest in technology, a field where women today are underrepresented.
KING 5, April 28, 2017

The unheralded mettle of for-profit college students

What leads more than 7 percent of the nation’s college students to enroll at for-profit institutions? Much of the discussion of higher education’ proprietary sector assumes that its member schools enroll students who are academically marginal and lack other options. That’s far too simplistic, a new study concludes. ... Contrary to common stereotypes, the two researchers say, their subjects generally saw their experience with a for-profit college as positive, and said little that traced their decision to enroll in it to poor academic performance in high school. Generally, they framed their enrollment in a for-profit as having stemmed from a desire to gain confidence, reach their potential, take charge of their lives, and shed social labels associated with a lack of a college degree.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, April 28, 2017

Is tuition discounting leading some colleges off a cliff?

As growing numbers of private colleges offer steep tuition discounts to most of their students, the practice’s costs are starting to equal or exceed its benefits, a new study concludes. The analysis of data from about 450 small, private baccalaureate colleges found that some actually had begun to lose net tuition revenue in using grant-aid offers to attract more students. For many, increases in tuition discounts had ceased to produce enrollment increases large enough for the practice to offer significant dividends. Nevertheless, the researchers found, such colleges increasingly appear to be succumbing to competitive pressures to offer prospective students a break on the full advertised tuition — commonly known as the sticker price.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, April 28, 2017

With a degree, diverging from a well-worn path

The oil-and-gas industry is king in Gulf Coast Louisiana, where generations have gone to work in the refineries. Christian Ryder’s father, grandfather, brother, and cousins all have worked in the oil industry, and he expected to follow. The Lake Charles, La., native, at 24, enrolled at Sowela Technical Community College with plans to earn an associate degree and become a refinery operator, a job that has long paid a comfortably middle-class salary. ... And Mr. Ryder found himself taking a different route after his curiosity was sparked by a physics course. “The more I learned,” he says, “the more I wanted to learn.” Now he’s studying physics at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and hopes to go on to earn a doctorate.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, April 28, 2017

Purdue's bold move

Purdue University’s acquisition of Kaplan University is an unexpected tectonic shift in American higher education, revealing both the changing roles of public universities and the dwindling fortunes of for-profit colleges. The deal announced Thursday has the Indiana-based public research university acquiring nearly all of the credential-issuing side of Kaplan’s higher education business — seven schools and colleges that make up Kaplan University, but not its School of Professional and Continuing Education.
Inside Higher Ed, April 28, 2017

Politics | Local, State, National

A ‘repudiation’ of Trump budget

In restoring year-round Pell Grants and boosting research and other programs targeted for major cuts in White House's 2018 blueprint, 2017 budget deal suggests Congress's disinclination to embrace Trump approach.
Inside HIgher Ed, May 2, 2017

Senators seek briefings from DeVos on IRS tool

Tennessee Republican Lamar Alexander and Washington Democrat Patty Murray, the chairman and ranking member of the Senate education committee, wrote to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos Monday seeking additional updates on the reinstatement of the IRS data retrieval tool.
Inside Higher Ed, May 2, 2017

Former Washington Gov. Mike Lowry, table-pounding liberal, dies at 78

Former Gov. Mike Lowry, a proud liberal Democrat who championed causes including universal health care and reparations for Japanese Americans interned during World War II, died Monday. Gov. Lowry, 78, died following complications from a stroke, according to a statement from his family released by Gov. Jay Inslee’s office.
The Seattle Times, May 1, 2017

Missing part of free-college push

Even after the November elections put hopes of a national free-college plan on ice, states and local entities have continued to pursue such proposals. The development of those plans has been motivated by the idea that making college tuition-free to all will level the playing field in the modern economy where everyone needs some higher education. Some of those proposals — most notably New York State's — have come under fire as middle-class giveaways.
Inside Higher Ed, May 1, 2017

Political division soars on campus, survey finds

The U.S. presidential election last year left its mark on college freshmen, who are more politically polarized than they’ve been in at least half a century, says an annual report released on Monday. Fewer first-year students than ever — 42 percent — described their politics as “middle of the road,” while 36 percent considered themselves liberal or far left and 22 percent conservative or far right.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 1, 2017

Wisconsin plan seeks to cut achievement gap in half

Wisconsin plans to cut its worst-in-the-nation student achievement gap in half within six years — a goal that would require a dramatic upsurge in test scores by non-white students. The state Department of Public Instruction also wants to cut the high school graduation gap in half over six years. Both goals are in the first draft of an accountability plan released Friday that is required under federal law and will dictate education policy in Wisconsin's K-12 schools for years to come. The plan also calls for struggling schools to work more closely with families and local communities to turn them around. That's a more collaborative and locally focused approach than was permitted under the previous federal law, No Child Left Behind, that centered on punishing schools deemed to be failing.
US News and World Report, April 28, 2017

Trump orders study of federal role in education

President Trump signed an executive order Wednesday that requires Education Secretary Betsy DeVos to study whether and how the federal government has overstepped its legal authority in K-12 schools, a move he framed as part of a broader effort to shift power from Washington to states and local communities. ... The order does not invest DeVos with any new authority. She already has broad powers to revise or withdraw policies that her predecessors promulgated.
The Washington Post, April 26, 2017

Last Modified: 2/9/18 11:40 AM
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