Welcome to the Daily Dose of Higher Education from BreakDrink.com. This is the Thursday, October 18th edition and I’m Sue Caulfield bringing you today’s news in colleges and universities.
“Controversy Over Suspension of All Part-Time Courses”
Over twenty percent of Nigeria’s student population has been affected by the suspension of part-time programmes in universities across the nation. Nigeria’s National Universities Commission has issued a suspension of part-time programmes, effective immediately, due to the results of a quality assurance audit. This audit confirmed several fears that the commission had about the programmes, such as student’s being under-qualified for courses, faculty members being unsuitable for their positions, and satellite campuses abusing programme privileges. Vice-chancellors have supported the decision to suspend programmes, despite the public out crys. Now that these classes are no longer an option, many part-time students are concerned about the lack of access to programmes. The NUC is working to relocate all current students or allow them to finish out their degrees over the next three years.
“Several Ballot Measures Could Have Significant Impact on Higher Ed this November”
Although higher education has not been the focus of any platform, there are a few issues that will reach the polls in November that could mean major changes in some states. A few of the major legislative pieces that will affect higher education throughout the United States are as follows:
- The fate of the University of California, California State University, and the California Community College Systems rests on Proposition 30, a tax increase that would provide much needed funding for these higher education institutions. Without this being passed, college and universities would face major budget issues.
- If Maryland’s DREAM Act is passed, undocumented students would be eligible for in-state tuition. This would come with various regulations – for example, the student must attend a Maryland high school for 3 years, graduate, take credits at a community college and THEN they would be eligible for the in-state tuition.
- Michigan is dealing with two propositions that affect higher education in a roundabout way. The first is Proposition 5, which would “require a two-thirds majority of the State House or Senate to impose any new taxes or increase the tax rate.” This would make it harder to fund public higher education institutions. The second, Proposition 2 would allow collective bargaining laws among graduate students, if passed.
- In New Jersey, voters passing Public Question 1 could mean an additional $750 million granted to public and private institutions. Not only would this funding help research, and capital funding, but it would show the state’s support for higher education for the future.
- Washington State voters will make the decision as to whether or not their public colleges and universities can invest public money into private stocks. This has been done before using public funds in times of need.
- In Arizona, passing the Quality Education & Jobs Act would extend a sales tax of one cent through the end of this year. Funding would be used for all aspects of education. If this doesn’t pass, $1 billion would be cut across the board.
- In Missouri, Proposition B being passed would mean that the state would generate a Health and Education Trust fund from a tobacco tax.
NYU Announces Changes to Its Law School Curriculum
Yesterday, Dean Richard Revesz and a committee of NYU alumni announced their plans to revamp the NYU Law School curriculum. Focusing on the third year, the committee added “pathway programs” to help students focus in on a speciality, study abroad initiatives, and a leadership program. Although some schools have opted to give students a five semester option, NYU Law felt that the third year could be valuable to students. To battle the recent trends that a J.D. is not a valuable investment for students, the committee focused on filling the third year with a plethora of options to round out their degree. Because schools are not willing to cut tuition, and jobs are scarce in this field, many law schools have chosen to reformat their third year. NYU looks towards this as a solution to the unemployment problem for law school graduates.
“George Lucas’s Force”
http://chronicle.com/article/Why-George-Lucas-Is-the/134942/ [story - opinion]
On a lighter note, check out this article on George Lucas and how he is one of the greatest artists of our time for combined visual and technological strength to develop masterpieces. Being a huge Star Wars fan I may be slightly biased, but this is a fun article to round out the week!
That’s it for tonight. Join us on Tuesday, as Shawn Brackett hosts another edition of Daily Dose. Happy Thursday!