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News Links | February 8, 2018

February 08, 2018 by SBCTC Communications

System News | Opinion

State lawmakers consider a plan to help homeless college students

A pilot project before lawmakers would provide funding for six college districts to provide services for homeless students. The plan requires the Washington State Board of Education to establish four pilot programs in community or technical colleges, two on each side of the Cascades. It also requires the Student Achievement Council to establish two more pilot programs at four-year universities, one on each side of the state. The pilot project would run for about four years and expire in 2023. ... Grays Harbor College President James Minkler said at the House bill’s hearing that it’s hard to gather accurate statistics on homeless college students because of the stigma surrounding the issue and the difficulty of counting a moving population. ... “This work is important to us and our statewide efforts to end the cycle of poverty,” said Erin Frasier, policy director for the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges. ... Voicing her support of the bill, [Sen. Jeannie] Darneille said that 23 percent of students surveyed at Bates Technical College in Tacoma live in unstable conditions.
Centralia Chronicle, Feb. 7, 2018

2 Edmonds Community College students top in state

Edmonds Community College students Naol Debele and Jessica Howard will be recognized for their scholastic achievement and community service at a ceremony on Thursday, March 22 at South Puget Sound Community College, in Olympia. Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman will be the keynote speaker. Representing Edmonds CC, Debele and Howard are among 78 of the state's top scholars who will represent the state's 34 community and technical colleges as members of the All-Washington Academic Team. Each two-year college in the state may nominate up to four students for the honor.
Edmonds Patch, Feb. 7, 2018

Seattle Central College emphasizing equity, social justice

Seattle Central College began working to create a new Equity and Social Justice emphasis prior to the last presidential election, but college president Sheila Edwards Lange said the political climate — before and after — is evidence for why such an offering is needed. The 25-credit ESJ emphasis is available to students pursuing associate degrees, and includes a number of existing courses and some new ones. The emphasis actually became available in the fall semester.
Capitol Hill Times, Feb. 6, 2018

Igniting dreams at the SPSCC FIRE Summit

Access to education is a key pillar of the American Dream. For some in our region, it remains just that: a fleeting dream that seems out of reach. But thanks to the tireless work of South Puget Sound Community College (SPSCC) and tribal members – students and educators – of the Nisqually, Squaxin Island, Skokomish, and Confederated Tribes of the Chehalis Reservation, Native students can experience higher education in person, first-hand at the annual FIRE Summit.
Thurston Talk, Feb. 6, 2018

EOCF names Rekah Strong as new executive director

Educational Opportunities for Children and Families (EOCF) recently announced the appointment of its new Executive Director Rekah Strong. In collaboration with EOCF’s Board of Directors, Strong will be responsible for ensuring the execution of an innovative board governance policy, visioning, strategic planning, community outreach and all internal operations including financial management of the organization, according to a news release. ... More recently, she was reappointed by Gov. Jay Inslee to serve as a Clark College Trustee and active advocate for education. 
The Reflector, Feb. 6, 2018

Trends | Horizons | Education

The impact of parents' education levels

The American dream — the idea that everyone is given an equal chance to succeed — is embedded in U.S. politics and culture. But the reality is that Americans start off in different places in ways that are sometimes difficult to overcome. A study of first-generation college students published today by the U.S. Education Department's National Center for Education Statistics shows that children of college-educated parents are much more likely to pursue and complete an undergraduate degree than are young people whose parents did not attend college. However, the gap closed significantly upon completion of a bachelor's degree, and the two groups' employment status, salary amounts and rates of enrollment in a master's degree were nearly the same.
Inside Higher Ed, Feb. 8, 2018

Over time, humanities grads close the pay gap with professional peers

There is something that the defenders of the humanities (and, more broadly, the liberal arts) want you to know: Sure, graduates who majored in the arts, philosophy, religion, or literature might make less than someone who majored in a professional program — at least initially. But they’re loving work and loving life — and that, the advocates have argued, is a good start. ... But humanities majors don’t seem miffed by the status of their jobs or the size of their paychecks. (And that may reflect, in part, those graduates’ expectations for a salary starting out.) For the most part, humanities graduates tracked closely to other fields in job security, job location, and opportunities for advancement. (Education majors, notably, had the highest level of job satisfaction.) The level of satisfaction with their wages is about the same as that of people in other jobs — although a slightly higher number of humanities respondents, compared with people in business and the sciences, admitted to worrying about money in the past week.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, Feb. 7, 2018

Security costs loom larger in campus free-speech fights. A lawsuit shows why.

The University of Washington’s College Republicans sued the university late Tuesday over its decision to charge the group $17,000 in security fees for a planned rally this weekend featuring a controversial conservative speaker. The group called the fees “draconian and unreasonable” and  argued that requiring sponsors to cover such costs is an illegal restriction on protected speech. ... The standoff comes as colleges nationwide grapple with the soaring cost of securing events where provocative speakers and angry protesters can be expected to clash.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, Feb. 7, 2018

College Republicans threaten to sue UW over $17,000 security fee for Saturday rally

The University of Washington says the UW College Republican club must pay $17,000 for security costs to put on a rally on Red Square this weekend. The club says it will sue to block the fee, calling it unconstitutional. The club has invited Patriot Prayer, a conservative Vancouver, Wash., group to Red Square for a rally Saturday afternoon. Last Thursday, nine days before the rally, UW officials told the 25-member club they’d need to pay the fee for UW police to keep the square secure. In an email, club president Chevy Swanson called the fee “outrageous,” and a lawyer for the club called the fee unconstitutional. The club plans to file a lawsuit in federal court Tuesday. It is the latest in an ongoing, nationwide battle on college campuses over free-speech rights — a fight that often pits controversial conservative speakers against college administrators trying to keep the peace.
The Seattle Times, Feb. 5, 2018

Politics | Local, State, National

Budget deal would add money, but not restore DACA

Senate leaders on Wednesday looked poised to reach an agreement on a two-year budget deal that would lift spending caps put in place at federal agencies by Congress in 2011. The lifting of those caps has long been sought by higher ed institutions who say they threaten sustainable funding of research. The agreement would add $4 billion in new money for student aid, according to a brief summary document circulated on Capitol Hill Wednesday, and boost spending on the National Institutes of Health by $2 billion. Not included in the deal is a fix for the group of young immigrants known as Dreamers, who have faced uncertainty over their status since President Trump announced in September that he would wind down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
Inside Higher Ed, Feb. 8, 2018

Education Department to propose compromise in borrower-defense negotiations

As part of the ongoing negotiations over a student loan forgiveness rule, the Trump administration is proposing a change to evidentiary standards for debt relief claims that would be a compromise between the positions of colleges and student advocates. The borrower-defense rule — crafted by the Obama administration to clarify how students defrauded or misled by their institutions could apply to have their federal loans forgiven — was originally set to take effect last year. But Education Secretary Betsy DeVos blocked the rule and announced she would pursue an overhaul that reflected the concerns of colleges.
Inside Higher Ed, Feb. 8, 2018

Higher ed finds its voice on PROSPER Act

With their attention occupied by tax reform last year, the higher education lobby had a muted response to the GOP's first crack at overhauling the student aid system and how it keeps colleges accountable. That’s begun to change over the last month as major higher ed associations have issued forceful criticisms of the PROSPER Act, as Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives have labeled their update to the Higher Education Act, while also alerting member institutions about perceived serious problems with the bill.
Inside Higher Ed, Feb. 7, 2018

CBO: House bill would reduce spending by $14.6B

A Congressional Budget Office score released Tuesday for House Republicans' update to the Higher Education Act finds the bill would reduce federal direct spending by $14.6 billion over 10 years, primarily because of changes to student loan programs. The PROSPER Act, as Republicans have named the legislation, would cut spending on federal student loan programs by $26.3 billion and boost mandatory spending on the Pell Grant program by $12.2 billion, the CBO finds.
Inside Higher Ed, Feb. 7, 2018

DeVos’s Education Dept. relaxed rules for for-profits under accreditor that closed

As a controversial accreditor of for-profit colleges sought new federal recognition,the Department of Education relaxed requirements for institutions affected by its loss of that recognition. The Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, or Acics, was stripped of its federal recognition in late 2016, after reports of shoddy oversight and a department analysis that found the accrediting council had failed to comply with more than 20 areas of federal regulation.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, Feb. 7, 2018

Why an update of higher ed’s sweeping framework could be years away

The Senate has held four hearings since the middle of January to discuss revamping the federal law governing higher education. But as momentum ramps up, signs of discord on fundamental issues may throw a wrench into the plan to reauthorize the law — which is overdue for an update — this year. The Senate’s education committee convened on Tuesday to discuss affordability in higher education. The problem was clear: The cost of higher education is rising, and students are having trouble repaying their debt. But there was less consensus on a solution.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, Feb. 6, 2018

Last Modified: 2/9/18 11:41 AM
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