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    For all those disappointed college applicants whose hopes were pinned on getting into a school highly ranked by U.S. News & World Report or some similar publication, take heart. This is your chance to be liberated from the tyranny of college rankings. “Tyranny” is not too strong a word. The people who publish college rankings wrap their products in a seductive veneer of professional expertise and statistical rigor. They express their evaluations in eye-catching numbers, presented in descending order (from 1 to 391, in the case of the U.S. News “national universities” list). According to that list, UCLA, ranked 20th, is better than the University of Southern California, ranked 27th. So, it must be true. Or is it? If you look at the methods used to produce those numbers, you will see that the entire enterprise, like the Emerald City in the Land of Oz, consists mostly of blue smoke and mirrors. Consider the formulas used by rankers to compute those numbers. Every step in the process — from the selection of variables, the weights assigned to them and the...
    America’s elite colleges are facing growing calls to end the decades-old tradition of giving an admissions boost to the children of alumni — a practice that critics say is rooted in racism and bestows an unfair advantage to students who need it least. Fueled by the national reckoning with racial injustice, opponents say they are gaining momentum in the battle over the contentious policy of legacy preferences. Ivy League students are pressing administrators to abandon the policy. Yale’s student government took a stance against the practice in November. A recent vote of Harvard students found that 60% oppose it. Hundreds of students and alumni across 30 colleges have promised to withhold financial donations over the issue. Civil rights groups are increasingly adding their support, including the American Civil Liberties Union, which is tackling legacy preferences as part of a campaign against systematic racism. And a bill in Congress aims to eliminate the practice. The proposal from Democrats would outlaw preferences for children of alumni or donors at colleges that receive federal money. It’s being pushed by the party’s progressive wing...
    The investigative reporter and author of the new book “Red-Handed: How American Elites Get Rich Helping China Win” told The Star News Network that U.S. colleges and universities are not complying with federal reporting laws in regard to their gifts from China and Chinese nationals. “Section 117 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 is very explicit,” said Peter Schweizer, the founder and president of the Government Accountability Institute and the host of The Drill Down podcast. “It says that if U.S. colleges and universities take in foreign donations, they’re required to report those to the federal government.” The problem is acute when it comes to institutions of higher learning reporting contributions from China, he said. One example is Yale University and the millions of dollars it received from Joseph Tsai, owner of the Brooklyn Nets and co-founder of the Chinese-based e-commerce site Alibaba, which has a market capitalization of more than $200 billion. “This is particularly applicable to China today,” Schweizer said. “Hundreds of millions of dollars [are donated] to American colleges and universities from Chinese nationals, many of...
    A Connecticut contractor admitted to securing deals at colleges in New York and Massachusetts in exchange for a kickback fee over the course of several years, federal officials announced. Fairfield County resident Stephen Dinapoli, age 42, of Wilton, the principal of a Connecticut environmental consulting firm in Norwalk, pleaded guilty in federal court in Springfield in Hampden County for his role in paying bribes to procure consulting contracts at educational institutions in Massachusetts and New York. Specifically, federal prosecutors said that Dinapoli pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy and two counts of bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds after being charged in August 2020. Acting US Attorney Nathaniel Mendell said that Dinapoli is the principal of Big East Environmental, an environmental project management and consulting firm based in Connecticut. From 2015 to 2019, Dinapoli paid cash bribes to co-conspirator Floyd Young, who held positions involving facility maintenance at three institutions including American International College (AIC) in Springfield, Mass. Specifically, Dinapoli paid Young in cash during face-to-face meetings in order to obtain contracts for environmental consulting work...
    The University of Maryland Medical System announced Monday a $5.1 million initiative to recruit nurses and other clinical bedside experts from the state’s community colleges. “As a System, we are committed to improving health outcomes for the communities that we serve,” UMMS Senior Vice President Lisa Rowen said in a news release. “And in the spirit of community, we have enhanced our partnerships with community colleges whose health professions programs are an excellent workforce resource including schools across Maryland and with Delaware Technical Community College.” Some of the system’s hospitals already had relationships with community colleges in their area, but the release said the initiative establishes a “comprehensive and unified partnership strategy with community colleges.” More Maryland News More Education News The UMMS Community College Tuition Assistance Incentive Program has 600 openings — 300 for registered nurses and 300 for other specific clinical positions. Qualifying positions in addition to registered nurses include licensed practical nurses, surgical techs, radiographers, respiratory therapists, certified nursing assistants and patient care techs. After graduation and with completion of necessary certifications and hospital orientation,...
    The Los Angeles Community College District: The Los Angeles Community College District continues to aggressively review and pursue all issues related to questionable, suspicious and/or fraudulent enrollments and financial aid applications. The District takes the situation with the utmost seriousness. Our review of the Fall 2021 Semester and the upcoming Winter session remains on-going, but not yet complete. READ MORE: First Case Of Omicron Variant Detected In LA CountyThe independent California Student Aid Commission previously confirmed that there appears to be individuals who are taking advantage of the situation due to the COVID-19 pandemic which caused a shift to more online education because online environments can often help shield a person’s true identity. LACCD is only one part of this larger, dynamic situation statewide and the District is cooperating with all appropriate external authorities regarding the situation. Due to pending reviews, as well as for security reasons and the protection of personal information, the District is not releasing specific details at this time about the situation. Releasing details now could interfere with existing, ongoing reviews and also could enhance the...
    LeBron James' eldest son Bronny is drawing the interest of top college basketball programs across the country, suggesting the young high school guard is poised to follow in his father's footsteps. Duke, Kansas, Kentucky and the University of North Carolina are all eyeing the Sierra Canyon High School junior, 17, who is listed at 6-foot-3 and 190 pounds, according to 247 Sports. On Friday, LeBron James posted an Instagram video showing Bronny bouncing a ball off the backboard and executing a windmill dunk in the gym of the Southern California high school. 'Scary hours coming soon!!' the proud father wrote in the caption.
    Rep. Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., is questioning a nearly $1.5 billion decrease in reported foreign gifts to U.S. colleges and universities since President Biden took office. The Education Department (DOE) in 2019 and 2020 began cracking down on schools’ acceptance of foreign gifts under Section 117 of the Higher Education Act in an effort to track the scope of foreign money from countries like China and Qatar in the U.S. education system. Gallagher noted in a Wednesday letter to Education Secretary Miguel Cardona that, between July 1, 2020, and Jan. 20, 2021, U.S. schools reported $1.6 billion in foreign gifts. Since Jan. 20, however, schools have reported just $4.3 million in gifts over a longer time period. CHINESE PROPAGANDA PROGRAM IN US SCHOOLS QUIETLY CHANGES HEADQUARTERS NAME TO AVOID SCRUTINY "Since Biden took office on Jan. 20, the number of reported foreign gifts has absolutely plummeted," Gallagher told Fox News Digital.  "American universities have reported just over $4 million in donations. That's a tiny number. The math doesn't add up. And making matters worse, it appears that the Biden administration has...
    President Joe Biden’s long-sought goal of free community college appears to be a victim of cost-cutting in his social spending plan, dealing a major blow to his vision for a historic expansion of educational opportunity to all Americans. Biden acknowledged as much in a televised town hall on Thursday night, citing the political realities created by Democratic holdout Sen. Joe Manchin and “one other person.” Still, he pledged that the fight was not over. “I promise you — I guarantee you — we’re going to get free community college in the next several years and across the board.” For Biden, it represents yet another setback to a plan he has been pushing for years. He backed a proposal for free community college in 2015 under the Obama administration, made it a key issue in his 2020 presidential campaign and has remained a staunch champion of the idea along with his wife, Jill, who teaches English at a community college. During the CNN town hall, Biden pointed to other provisions in the legislation, including increased Pell Grants for low-income students, as...
    Chattooga High School student, Jeremias Villatoro excelled in College Board assessments and schoolwork to earn these awards, which colleges use to identify academically competitive underrepresented students. Chattooga High School student, Jeremias Villatoro has earned academic honors from the College Board National Recognition Programs. These National Recognition Programs grant underrepresented students with academic honors that can be included on college and scholarship applications and connect students with universities across the country, helping them meaningfully connect to colleges and stand out during the admissions process. Colleges and scholarship programs identify students awarded National African American, Hispanic, Indigenous and/or Rural/Small Town Recognition through College Board’s Student Search Service. “We’re thrilled that Jeremias has earned this recognition. We are very proud of him for his achievement in his courses and on the College Board assessments,” said Chief Academic Officer, Michelle Helie. “These programs help students from underrepresented backgrounds stand out to colleges during admissions.” Students who may be eligible have a GPA of 3.5 or higher and have excelled on the PSAT/NMSQT or...
    Colleges nationwide are continuing to crackdown on unvaccinated students, with one school issuing weekly $200 fines to those who’ve yet to get the jab. Students who don’t abide by Quinnipiac University’s vaccine mandate will receive weekly $100 fines for the first two weeks of non-compliance, and additional $200 weekly fines going forward. Fines are capped at $2,275 per semester, the Connecticut private school’s student newspaper reported. Students who delay getting vaccinated beyond September 14 will lose their on-campus Wifi privileges, staff said in an email to students. The consequences of defying vaccine mandates don’t end there. Quinnipiac University in Connecticut is hitting unvaccinated students with weekly $200 fines Virginia Tech has kicked out more than 100 students who failed to submit COVID-19 vaccination documentations, university officials said August 31. Of the about 37,000 Virginia Tech students expected when classes began last week, 134 were booted for failing to submit their proof of vaccination or exemption documents, university spokesman Mark Owczarski told the Roanoke Times. Earlier that month, University of Virginia kicked out 238 students for failure to comply with...
    Enrollment and retention rates among males when compared to their female counterparts at American colleges and universities are at record lows, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday. If the current trend continues in the coming years, for every man, two females will earn a college degree, Douglas Shapiro, the executive director of the non-profit research group National Student Clearinghouse (NSC), told the WSJ. The inconspicuous movement to increase enrollment among the male population has become “higher education’s dirty little secret,” college enrollment consultant Jennifer Delahunty told the WSJ. Enrollment and retention rates among males when compared to their female counterparts at American colleges and universities are at record lows, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday. If the current trend continues in the coming years, for every man, two females will earn a college degree, Douglas Shapiro, the executive director of the non-profit research group National Student Clearinghouse (NSC), told the Journal. Women are typically the focus at higher education institutions amid an ongoing push for gender equality and protection against sexual assault on campus, the WSJ reported. As...
    Virginia Polytechnic Institute disenrolled 134 students who did not comply with a vaccine mandate last week, according to the Roanoke Times. Mark Owczarski, associate vice president for university relations at Virginia Tech, said the students had failed to provide proof of vaccination or to claim an exemption on religious or medical grounds, the Roanoke Times reported. The disenrolled students have the option to re-enroll once they have provided proof of vaccination Owczarski told the newspaper. There was originally an October 1 deadline to comply with the vaccination requirement at the school located in Blacksburg, Virginia. Oczwarski said that it was possible some of the disenrolled students may have been unable to attend college for personal reasons. (RELATED: ‘Crafted Out Of Thin Air’: Amherst College Students Push Back On COVID-19 Guidelines) A paramedic with Israel’s Magen David Adom medical service gets a vial of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine on August 24, 2021 at a vaccination centre. (Photo by AHMAD GHARABLI/AFP via Getty Images) Of the 37,000 students at Virginia Tech, 95% have been vaccinated, officials revealed during an Aug. 31 Board...
    Erica MacKinnon was about to log in to her virtual English literature class when she learned that her college—the school she had enrolled in, then dropped out of, then re-enrolled in 22 years later; the same school her grandmother had graduated from exactly a century ago—was closing for good. The announcement, which came in an email opaquely titled “Mills Transition,” was as shocking to her as it was to the rest of the 700-person student body—along with the staff and faculty, who had heard of the closure only an hour earlier. But soon it would be splashed across national newspapers: Mills College, the 169-year-old women’s college in Oakland, California, would stop accepting students this fall and confer its final degrees in 2023. “To be back at Mills—to have this overwhelming joy and sit in these classrooms and have professors lecture on Faulkner and Morrison—was so beautiful,” MacKinnon said. “And then to have this announcement [come] out of the blue was so heartbreaking and shocking. The anger was palpable.” Mills students were not the only ones to receive a similar shock...
    VIDEO2:1102:11Study will track Covid-19 transmissions by studying university studentsThe News with Shepard Smith Even before the pandemic, Eden Schiano, 19, had concerns about her first year of college. Schiano suffered from anorexia in high school and was uncertain how the fall of 2020 would go as a freshman at Virginia Commonwealth University. Being mostly isolated in her dorm quickly took a toll. "I was in my dorm room, doing classes online and I started losing weight," she said. By October, Schiano decided to withdraw. Whether for mental health conditions or concerns about Covid, the number of students taking time off skyrocketed last year. But withdrawing mid-semester could come at a steep financial cost. More from Personal Finance:College plans rebound although cost is a top concernHundreds of colleges say Covid vaccines will be mandatoryColleges and unvaccinated students are set for a standoff While a number of colleges and universities have said they will offer refunds of fees and room and board if campuses must close again, the reimbursement policies vary from school to school — and nearly all of them have drawn the...
    Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) has debuted a bill that would defund every public university in California. New legislation, introduced by three congressional Republicans, would penalize hundreds of thousands of college students for attending schools that offer medication abortion on campus. Reps. Chip Roy of Texas, Mary Miller of Illinois, and Steve Daines of Montana announced the Protecting Life on College Campus Act of 2021 at a press conference on Wednesday. The bill would prohibit all direct or indirect federal funding for any college or university "that hosts or is affiliated with any school-based service site that provides abortion drugs or abortions to students of the institution or to employees of the institution or site." "This legislation is the next logical step in our quest to protect life," Roy stated. "We shouldn't be a country where we take women at their most vulnerable time, when they're young, when they've gone off to college in this case we're talking about, and essentially allow for there to be chemically induced abortion, for a...
                        Gov. Mike DeWine (R) Thursday signed HB 244 into law, a bill that disallows schools and universities from forcing their students to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Until the three COVID-19 vaccines, developed by Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, and Pfizer, respectively, receive full approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), that law will stand, according to The Cincinnati Enquirer.  Right now, the vaccines are only approved for emergency use. They may not be fully approved by the FDA before the law takes effect in 90 days, or before most students return to the classroom for the 2021-2022 school year. “We are confident the three main COVID vaccines – the Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson – will receive full FDA approval,” DeWine’s spokesman Dan Tierney reportedly said. HB 244 was sponsored by state Rep. Andrea White (R-OH-41). The law does not apply to private colleges, some of which, including Kenyon College and Ohio Wesleyan University, will require students to be vaccinated in order to attend classes in the...
    A group of students from Washington D.C. struggled to say whether they were 'proud' of the United States, with the majority of those questioned by a reporter seemingly embarrassed by their country. The simple question was posed by Ophelie Jacobson, a reporter with Campus Reform, a conservative news website just ahead of the July Fourth holiday. Jacobson walked around the wealthy suburb of Georgetown which is also home to the liberal Georgetown University.  Students from Georgetown and American Universities were asked if they felt proud to be American The majority of students said they were not proud to be American with some adding they were 'embarrassed'  One woman who was interviewed said she felt 'embarrassed to be an American every day' when asked whether she was proud. 'I think a lot of things about this country are really embarrassing, just like…racist history, colonization, and even currently with what's going on with politics the cops,' she explained during the five minute video.  'I think that's a complicated question for me,' another student said. 'I think most of...
                        Earlier this week, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill exempting Florida’s colleges and universities from COVID related lawsuits. The schools would be shielded from those seeking to sue the school based on decisions made to close campuses forcing students online. “The Legislature finds that during the COVID-19 public health emergency, educational institutions had little choice but to close or restrict access to their campuses in an effort to protect the health of their students, educators, staff and communities,” the bill read. Florida’s lawmakers and numerous special interests were vying for COVID-liability protections at the outset of this Spring’s legislative session. Colleges and universities across Florida were concerned about facing incoming class-action lawsuits, and Florida State University (FSU) was one of the schools depending on DeSantis signing the bill after they were hit with a lawsuit in May. The suit claims FSU did not offer adequate refunds extended to students who were required to pay fees for uniquely on-campus services. “To the extent refunds have been offered, the...