Behind the News

Developing Latino Leaders

With the growing U.S. Latino population, it is no surprise this is also the fastest growing student population. According to a recent report from the College Board on Latino college completion (covered in University Business in the November/December issue), outreach efforts should be specific to this population. An example of this aim in action is Georgia State University. Because of a focus on the Latino population, graduation rates for Latino students have improved from 38 percent in 2000 to 59 percent in 2010, outpacing the national average of 19 percent in 2009.

Law School Litigation

What to expect in 2012

Jobs aren’t easy to come by these days. Instead of blaming the economy—or themselves—some students are blaming their alma maters.

After graduates from New York Law School and Thomas M. Cooley School of Law (Mich.) accused the schools of misinterpreting graduates’ employment and salary statistics and filed class action suits against them last summer, two firms have warned they are planning to go after other law schools this year.

People Watch

  • A. Clayton Spencer, vice president for policy at Harvard, has been named the eighth president of Bates College (Maine), effective July 1. Before spending the past 15 years at Harvard, Spencer served as chief education counsel in the U.S. Senate, working under Senator Edward M. Kennedy. She will succeed Nancy J. Cable, interim president since July 1, 2011.

    "Tell Me Now" : Acting on Early Action

    After dropping early admissions programs four years ago, Harvard and Princeton reinstated them this year. They received a large number of applicants, which comes as no surprise, but institutions that never ended their early action programs are experiencing increased numbers, as well. “We’re seeing more and more students applying by early action simply to get answers earlier,” notes Tom Weede, chair of NACAC’s Admission Practices Committee and vice president for enrollment at Butler University (Ind.).

    The Policy Police

    People can be very sensitive about their social media accounts, as witnessed any time Facebook makes changes to the news feed presentation. So it makes sense that the Sam Houston State University (Texas) campus reacted badly when administrators tried to implement a new social media policy requiring any school group with SHSU in its name to grant administrative access to the Marketing and Communications department. Cries of “free speech” quickly followed. Since then, reports in the campus newspaper indicate a social media committee was created and tasked with developing a new policy.

    Update: Qatar Campuses

    The trend of opening branch campuses overseas is cyclical. When things are good, institutions look outside their borders. When things get bad, institutions tend to retract those tentacles. However, Education City in Qatar, which opened in 2001 after six years of planning from the Qatar Foundation and now has seven higher ed institutions, is going strong.

    In November, Northwestern University in Qatar broke ground on a new 32,520-square meter building to house its media, communication, and journalism school. Northwestern University (Ill.) founded its Qatar branch in 2008.

    Occupy Higher Ed

    Movement spreads from Wall Street to the campus green

    The Occupy movement that has swept the nation—and the world—also has a home at many colleges and universities. Long associated with protests, and historically touted as the home of open discourse, American colleges and universities have had a difficult balancing act on their hands: how to promote free speech while maintaining safety on campus.

    People Watch

    Maravene S. Loeschke is no stranger to Towson University (Md.). She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from there and served on the faculty for more than 30 years. Now she has been appointed Towson’s next president, effective Jan. 1, 2012. Beginning in 1970, Loeschke moved up in the ranks from faculty member to dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communication, a position she held from 1997 to 2002. She is currently president of Mansfield University (Pa.), where she has been since 2006, and has previously served as provost of Wilkes University (Pa.). … David D.

    EduComm Becomes UBTech 2012

    Last month, Professional Media Group, owners and producers of the EduComm conference, announced a new name for the conference’s 2012 incarnation: UBTech.

    When it began in 2003, EduComm’s focus was on the convergence of AV and IT in higher education. But as the years went by, EduComm sessions increasingly reflected the disciplines and topics covered in University Business magazine and its companion web seminar series.

    Certified Green

    Move over LEED, there’s a new certification in town. It’s not just buildings getting a green stamp of approval these days—events are, too. Colleges and universities across the country have begun implementing “certified green events programs” to limit the impact campus events have on the environment.

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