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From UB

Liberal Arts programs need certain elements of hands-on training to better equip their students for specific trades, careers or professions. At the same time, Tech Ed programs could benefit from the inclusion of instructional elements designed to produce more virtuous, knowledgeable and articulate graduates. If Liberal Arts programs of study could be made a little more like Tech Ed, perhaps graduates would find it easier to obtain suitable employment.

Under age-discrimination laws, college professors, like most American workers, can’t be forced into retirement. Congress ended mandatory age-70 faculty retirement in 1994, after the National Academy of Sciences predicted the change wouldn’t increase professors’ average retirement age.

Are universities hiring non-tenured adjuncts—who now make up two-thirds of the faculty workforce—because their tenured veterans won’t retire?

Delayed retirement is a contributing factor in the proliferation of adjuncts, says Brian Kaskie, associate professor of health policy at the University of Iowa’s College of Public Health. Employees who can’t be fired and won’t retire are a burden administrators don’t want to assume.

Colleges and universities are experimenting with strategies—from financial incentives to life coaching—aimed at coaxing veteran professors into starting the next chapter of their lives.

Faculty members finding exciting new directions once they retire from their tenured professorships. But data suggests that faculty members are waiting longer to retire than they once did, with sometimes problematic implications for their institutions.

The road to employment—Ivy Tech’s Machine Tool Technology program, developed by employers in need of skilled workers, offers certificate, technical certificate and associate degree options ranging from 18 to 60 credit hours.

From construction workers and machinists to occupational therapists and fire fighters, skilled laborers are in high demand—and shortages of employees are making it difficult for companies to fill jobs. Community colleges are well-positioned to train workers to fill these skills gaps.

TRAINING FOR EMT JOBS—At Rowan College at Burlington County’s TEC Building, employees of the paramedics company Virtua can put their tuition reimbursement benefits to use. RCBC is growing and improving its Health Sciences programs in partnership with the company.

There is no one-size-fits-all partnership between the community college and industry. Arrangements can range from brief partnerships that fill immediate hiring needs to long-term strategic relationships that provide ongoing training and development for current and future employees.

The Industry Workforce Needs Coalition, a national network of businesses striving to increase the number of skilled workers, outlines three separate levels of industry-aligned partnerships:

Skill-building—Former coal industry workers may find them-selves at the University of Wyoming researching how to use water byproducts from oil and gas wells.

Universities are creating scholarships and entrepreneurial opportunities to help the unemployed and underemployed gain footing in an ever-greening economy.

Bill Berg is an enrollment management consultant at Ruffalo Noel Levitz.

By 2015, the number of law school applicants declined by 46 percent from a 2004 peak, a result of a shrinking job market and “offshoring” of some legal work. Most law schools were forced to change the way they recruited, admitted, awarded and enrolled students to respond to the drop.

Drumming up support for a program where food service gives back can involve highlighting a prominent, well-loved individual within campus dining.

Fond du Lac Tribal & Community College in Minnesota, for example, named a food pantry after the school’s first housing director, Bruce Carlson, who died unexpectedly in 2010.

When a trio of students at Christopher Newport University in Virginia wanted to start a program to collect leftover food from the dining halls each night and deliver it to a rescue mission, the director of the university’s dining services had some questions.

A bipartisan bill intended to improve college access and graduation rates would impose college-loan program penalties on institutions that perform poorly in these areas. In turn, schools that do enroll a significant number of low-income students would be eligible for up to $8 million over five years.

A student loan that goes into default costs 250 percent more than a loan paid back on schedule. ( wildpixel)

Some advocacy groups see student loan debt as not just a financial problem, but a growing social justice concern, as well. Now, some 40 civil rights, legal aid and public interest are urging the Department of Education to determine whether debt disproportionately impacts minorities.

Weldon H. Latham is founder and chair of the Corporate Diversity Counseling Group and a member of the Higher Education Group of Jackson Lewis PC. He can be contacted at

Universities welcome media coverage of college sports, groundbreaking research and alumni achievement—all of which generate recognition and revenues supporting their educational mission. Too often, however, racially charged events at universities have dominated those headlines.

Dakota Wesleyan University's $1.2 million theater department will provide more versatile performance space. Manchester Community College at work on $9 million HVAC/electrical tech training facility. And community will share clinic space at Creighton University's school of dentistry.

University of Wyoming President Laurie Nichols has met with the Northern Arapaho and Eastern Shoshone business councils to recruit students.

University of Wyoming President Laurie Nichols has been traveling to local Native American reservations in an effort to improve recruitment of these students.

The initiative started in her previous position as provost at South Dakota State University. Wyoming’s Native American population is 2.5 percent, while the university’s is less than 1 percent.

Nichols has met with both the Northern Arapaho and Eastern Shoshone business councils. Their tribal populations are growing, which means more prospective students in the coming years.