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Deciding where to install a solar array is one of the most critical decisions you’ll make.

Respond yes or no to the following questions as a first step in determining which type of installation makes more sense for your campus.

Rooftop installation

Are there obstructions on the roof—such as skylights, HVAC systems or other equipment—that would make it difficult to install solar panels?

ISA provider 13th Avenue, which is currently talking to several institutions about setting up ISA pilot programs, has found that funding is a key challenge. “The schools are interested, but they are reluctant to fund the program so we are busy trying to raise money,” says Casey Jennings, chief operating officer.

ISA provider Vemo Education and the Jain Family Institute, a nonprofit think tank that supports the development of ISAs, are also in the exploratory phase with a handful of higher ed institutions interested in making the investment to launch their own ISAs.

An income-share agreement (ISA) is an alternative to using student loans to finance higher education. Rather than a loan, a student agrees to pay a percentage of their future income for a set number of years back to the investor, which could be a university that funds its own ISA or a pool of investors that has launched an ISA.

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal assistance. —20 U.S.C. § 1681(a), better known as Title IX

“The last thing colleges want to do is put a former student in collections,” says Harrison Wadsworth, executive director of the Coalition of Higher Education Assistance Organizations. But when internal efforts to collect tuition don’t work, it’s important to have somewhere to turn for help.

Yammer (free)

Good for: Collaboration and communication

Who’s using it: Penn State

From event planning to website redesign, setting up Yammer networking groups to share ideas, get feedback and check in on the progress of projects can help large campuses stay connected.

Trello (free)

Good for: Tracking projects

Who’s using it: The George Washington University

1. Set some ground rules. After introducing Slack, some users felt it was hard to cut through the clutter of irrelevant information, says Dominic Abbate, the creative director at The George Washington University. So they responded by setting up specific channels designated for non-work chit-chat like #food and #just-for-fun.

2. Listen to feedback. When Cherwell’s adoption rate was lagging because the tool was too complex and IT-focused, The University of New Mexico’s IT team redesigned the portal to make it more customer-friendly.

First-year college students with executive function (EF) difficulties arrive on campus and can be overwhelmed by the independence.

Disabilities services administrators at Greenfield Community College in Massachusetts, University of Connecticut and Landmark College in Vermont recommend the following assistive technology for students with executive dysfunction:

A PLACE TO GATHER, MOURN, REFLECT—Hours after the April 16 tragedy, a higher ed student organization placed 32 “Hokie Stones” on the campus Drillfield. Later, stones weighing 300 pounds each were permanently placed in the field, with paths to allow for easier viewing.

A decade and well over 100 school shootings since the Virginia Tech tragedy, the higher ed community has considered and implemented changes in policy and practice recommended after the full investigation. 

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