Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Court Finds Due Process Denied in Sex Assault Case

Inside Higher Ed
By Jeremy Bauer-Wolf
September 26, 2017

A federal appeals court has agreed to block the University of Cincinnati's suspension of a student, saying the institution violated his rights bu not allowing him to question the female student who accused him of sexually assaulting her. 

The decision bu the U.S. Court of Appeals fir the Sixth Circuit follows the announcement Friday from Education Secretary Betsy DeVos that she would pull guidance on Title IX investigations and adjudication the Obama administration released in 2011. 

Read the full article on the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Education Dept. Replaces Obama-Era Title IX Directives With New Interim Guidance

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Fenanda Zamudio-Suarez
September 22, 2017

The U.S. Department of Education has rescinded two pieces of Obama-era guidance that told colleges how they should handle issues related to campus sexual assault, and has replaced them with new interim guidance, the department announced on Friday.

In a speech this month, the education secretary, Betsy DeVos, announced that the department would begin a process for replacing the Obama-era guidance.  The department's action on Friday withdrew two key documents: a 2011 "Dear Colleague" letter, which kicked off a new era of enforcement under the gender-equity law known as Title IX, and a 2014 questions-and-answers document, which offered colleges additional guidance on how they should respond to reported sexual violence.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

310,567 Signatures Block 'Right to Work' in Missouri

Labor Notes
By Judy Ancel
September 18, 2017

The results astounded everyone who thought they knew the Missouri labor movement: more than 300,000 signatures to repeal "right to work."

Thousands of union members and allies marched through the streets of the state capital August 18 to deliver 163 boxes of petitions signed by 310,567 Missourians.  The signers called for referendum to repeal the right-to-work law passed by the legislature earlier this year.

Read the full article at the Labor Notes website here.

Legal Brief Against Trump's Travel Ban

AAUP
September 22, 2017

Yesterday the AAUP joined with the American Council on Education and other higher education groups in an amicus brief to the US Supreme Court opposing Trump's travel ban.  The brief argues that people from the six countries identified in the ban should not be barred or deterred from entering the United States and contributing to our colleges and universities.

As the brief notes, the ban has caused specific harm to higher education.  From the moment the executive order containing the ban was signed, recruits were deterred from accepting faculty position in the United States.  Some scholars have pulled out of academic conferences here, either because they were directly affected by the ban or because they were concerned about its impact.  In the brief, we emphasize the international exchange of scholarly work, and explain how the ban "jeopardizes the vital contributions made by foreign students, scholars, and faculty by telling the world in the starkest terms that American colleges and universities are no longer receptive to them."

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.

Win for Climate Science and the AAUP

AAUP
September 15, 2017

Today the Arizona Court of Appeals rejected attempts to by a "free market" legal foundation to use public records requests to compel faculty members to release emails related to their climate research.

In an amicus brief in support of the scientists, the AAUP had urged that Arizona statute creates an exemption to public release of records for academic research records, and that a general statutory exemption protecting records when in the best interests of the state, in particular the state's interest in academic freedom, should have been considered.  The appeals court agreed.

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.

AAUP Joins ACE Letter Urging Congress to Pass DACA Legislation

AAUP
September 14, 2017


The AAUP signed on to a September 12 letter to congressional leaders urging them to pass legislation that would offer permanent protection to individuals currently participating in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.  Over seventy-five associations joined the community letter, initiated by the American Council on Education following the Trump administration's decision to rescind the policy that enabled nearly 800,000 individuals to receive temporary protection through the DACA program.

The AAUP issued a statement on September 5 denouncing the administration's decision to end the DACA program, which provides renewable, two-year work permits to immigrants brought to this country as children.  A large number of individuals granted DACA are enrolled in colleges or universities.  As ACE president Ted Mitchell wrote in the community letter, "Colleges and universities have seen these remarkable people up close, in our classrooms and as our colleagues and friends.  Despite the challenges they face, they have made an incredible mark on our country and economy.  They should continue to be able to do so.  If we are unable to protect these Dreamer, we will be shutting the door to an entire generation of individuals who only seek to contribute their best to America."

Read the full article at the national AAUP website here.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

DACA Student Says She Was Harassed by Classmate Over Immigration Status

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Samuel Hoisington
September 13, 2013

Updated (9/13/2017, 4:40 p.m.) with the news that the accused student is no longer enrolled.

A student at Transylvania University, in Kentucky, has accused the university of failing to act after what she alleges was a stream of online harassment brought on by a classmate posting about her immigration status.

In a video on the website of the Lexington Herald- Leader, Paola Garcia says a classmate posted identifying information about her on a "racial hatred page" that said, "Everyone go report this illegal at my school, bragging about breaking the law."

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Tensions Grow at Rochester on Harassment Allegations

Inside Higher Ed
By Scott Jaschik
September 13, 2017

Tensions are growing at the University of Rochester over allegations of harassment by a prominent professor.

After the allegations surfaced in an article in Mother Jones that appeared Friday, the university strongly defended its handling of the case and said that there was no evidence to back up the allegations.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Taking a Stand Against Harassment, Part of the Broader Threat to Higher Education

AAUP National
September 7, 2017

In s statement issued today, the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), American Federation of Teachers (AFT), and Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) denounce vicious threats of violence and even death directed against faculty members, their families, or their institutions following remarks they have made, or area alleges to have made, in public speeches, on social media, or in the classroom.  The threats are often accompanied by calls for college and university administrators to summarily dismiss or otherwise discipline the offending faculty member.  A large number of those threatened have been African American or are involved in race and gender studies.

Prominent cases from last week include Mark Bray, a lecturer at Dartmouth, and Kenneth Storey at the University of Tampa.  Other recent high-profile cases involved Johnny Williams (Trinity College), Keeanga Yamahtta-Taylor (Princeton University), Lisa Durden (Essex County College), Dana Cloud (Syracuse University), Sarah E. Bond (University of Iowa), Tommy Curry (Texas A&M University), and George Ciccariello-Maher (Drexel University).

Read the full statement at the AAUP website here.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

AAUP Denounces Decision to End DACA Program

AAUP
September 5, 2017

In response to President Donald Trump's decision to eliminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) president Rudy Fichtenbaum issued the following statement.

The American Association of University Professors denounces in the strongest possible terms the decision by the Trump administration to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA).  This decision marks a continuation of the anti-immigrant racist policies that the administration had supported from the start.

Read the full statement at the AAUP website here.

Trump Ends DACA

Inside Higher Ed
By Elizabeth Redden
September 6, 2017

The Trump administration announced Tuesday that it will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, through which about 800,000 undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children have gained the right to work and temporary protection against the risk of deportation.  The administration said it will phase out the program, which was established by President Obama in 2012, after a six-month period to give Congress a chance to act on legislation that could restore the program.

In a Tweet on Tuesday evening, Trump said, "Congress now has 6 months to legalize DACA (something the Obama Administration was unable to do.)  If they can't I will revisit the issue!"

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Monday, August 28, 2017

The Antifa Academic

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Nell Gluckman
August 24, 2017

Since the 2016 election, the rise of the so-called alt-right has drawn another fringe groups onto the college campus and into the public consciousness: antifa, a contraction of the word "anti-facist."

Antifa members violently protested Milo Yiannopoulos's speeches, prompting the University of California at Berkeley to cancel an event scheduled on that campus in February.  They were at a white-supremacist rally that began on August 11 at the University of Virginia and that turned deadly in Charlottesville, Va., the following day.

Read the full interview at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Texas Colleges Brave Harvey

Inside Higher Ed
By Nick Roll
August 28, 2017

Tropical Storm Harvey continued to pummel southeast Texas on Sunday after downgrading from hurricane status, as flooding progressed, the death toll rose to five in Houston and calls were put out by authorities to coordinate with boat-owning citizens for rescue operations.

For colleges in the area, from Corpus Christi to Beaumont, the storm caused delays and evacuations, although they seemed to largely escape any serious damage.  Photos posted to social media by those on the ground showed flooding at the University of Houston, as some parts of the city and surrounding area saw residents taking to their roofs to stay out of the water.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Friday, August 25, 2017

A Contract, 13 Years After Forming Faculty Union

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
August 25, 2017

Thirteen years after voting to form a union, about 140 full-time faculty members at Point Park University have reached a tentative collective bargaining agreement with their administration, the Pittsburgh Post Gazette reported.  Neither Communications Workers of America, which represents the faculty members, nor the administration has released details of the contract, which will be voted on Friday.  But it represents more than a decade's worth of back-and-forth between professors and the university, which argued full-time faculty members at private institutions are managers and therefore not entitled to collective bargaining by legal precedent.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

AAUP Statement Regarding Charlottesville

AAUP National
August 14, 2017

The following statement was issued by the American Association of University Professors president Rudy Fichtenbaum and AAUP first vice president Henry Reichman following the events in Charlottesville, Vrginia over the weekend.

"Our hearts broke this weekend as we watched the expressions of racism, anti-Semitism, and hatred on the University of Virginia campus result in violence.  We are especially saddened by the death of one activist and the wounding of others.  Expression of racism and hatred paired with violent actions are not new in our country.  Our history shows that marchers armed with guns and sticks, carrying shields and torches, and chanting Nazi slogans have but one purpose: to strike fear and terror in the hearts of people of color, immigrants, Jews, Muslims, and all who believe in a more inclusive America.

Read the full statement at the AAUP website here.

Monday, August 14, 2017

White Nationalists Rally at University of Virginia

Inside Higher Ed
By Scott Jaschik
August 14, 2017

Hundreds of white nationalists marched and rallied at the University of Virginia Friday night.  They carried torches and chanted, "You will not replace us and "Jews will not replace us."  They also chanted "blood and soil," a Nazi slogan.

A major rally by various white nationalist groups -- under the name "Unite the Right" -- had been planned for Charlottesville Saturday.  The city is progressive and not at all a center of white nationalism.  But various groups have made Charlottesville a target because the city plans to remove a statue of Robert E. Lee from a local park.  The Klu Klux Klan and supporters rallied in the city in July, causing concern at the university, but Friday night's march was on campus and ended at the Rotunda, a hollowed space at the university.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

UVA Responds to Mayhem at White Nationalists' Rally

Academe Blog
Posted by Martin Kich
August 12, 2017

The following are four statements issued by the University of Virginia and President Theresa A. Sullivan over the last 36 hours.  They are presented from the most recent to the least recent, and they are followed by news updates.

President Sullivan Condemns Demonstration Violence

As events have unfolded on Grounds and in Charlottesville during this weekend's alt-right rally, the University and President Theresa A. Sullivan have distributed a number of messages.  Please find them below.

Read the full post at the Academe Blog here.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

AAUP Responds to DOJ Affirmative Action Initiative

AAUP National
August 2, 2017

The following statement was issued by Hank Reichman, first vice president of the American Association of University Professors, in response to news that the Justice Department will redirect resources to investigating and possibly litigating affirmative action cases in college admissions.

"The American Association of University Professors is deeply troubled by yesterday's announcement that the US Department of Justice will redirect resources toward investigating and potentially filing suit against colleges and universities deemed to discriminate against white applicants.  While the department does not explicitly mention affirmative action, it is clear that the effort-to be directed, it appears, by political appointees rather than career attorneys in the Office of Educational Opportunity- will target programs that offer opportunities to members of historically disadvantaged groups.  That such programs remain necessary is demonstrated by Department of Education data showing the gap in college enrollment between blacks and whites did not change measurably between 2003 and 2013.

Read the full article at the national AAUP website here.

Guidance on Border Searchers

AAUP National
August 1, 2017

The AAUP released a new document with responses to frquently asked questions about inspections of electronic devices by US border patrol officers.  Faculty members who travel internationally should be aware of their rights and obligations, whether they are citizens or noncitizens.  Due to the "border search exception" to the Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution, your rights with respect to searches and seizures by the government are different at borders than they are elsewhere.  You can find the FAQs here.

Read the full article at the national AAUP website here.

Friday, August 4, 2017

The Racist Who Pioneered Right-to-Work Laws

Labor Notes
By Michael Pierce
August 3, 2017

As right-to-work laws proliferate, it's worth remembering that they originated as a means to maintain Jim Crow labor relations in the South and to beat back what was seen as a Jewish conspiracy.

No one was more important in placing right-to-work on the conservative political agenda than Vance Muse of the Christian American Association, a larger-than-life Texan whose own grandson described him as "a white supremacist, an anti-Semite, and a Communist-baiter, a man who beat on labor unions not on behalf of working people, as he said, but because he was paid to do so."

Read the full article at the Labor Notes website here.

Nissan dispute could go down as most vicious anti-union crusade in decades

The Guardian
By Bernie Sanders
August 3, 2017

A few months before the historic March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, Dr Martin Luther King Jr wrote in his Letter from a Birmingham Jail: "We know from painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed."

This week, thousands of courageous workers at a Nissan plant in Canton, Mississippi, are doing just that.  They are voting for the right to join a union, the right to make a living wage and the right to job security and pensions.  And they are doing so by connecting workers' rights with civil rights, as the plant's workforce is over 80% African American.

Read the full article at The Guardian's website here.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Is Academic Freedom's Watchdog Losing Its Bite?

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
July 27, 2017

At least once a year, Frank Phillips College, in Borger, Tex., gets a letter inviting its administration to work with the American Association of University Professors to get off of the AAUP's censure list.  Like many institutions that annually receive such letters, the small community college rebuffs the offer.

The routine has been the same since 1969.  That's the year after the AAUP censured the college's administration after concluding that it had fired Aileene Ledford Gauntt, an instructor who had worked there for 10 years, without due process or severance pay.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Coping With a Blockade

Inside Higher Ed
By IHE Staff
July 31, 2017

For two decades Qatar has been building its Education City, which is now home to six prominent American universities.  The Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development has financed the project for the small, wealthy nation, which is located on the Arabian Peninsula.

Last month, however, five Arab nations began a blockade and severed diplomatic ties with Qatar, raising worries about the possible impact on Education City and its U.S. partners -- Carnegie Mellon, Cornell, Georgetown, Northwestern, Texas A&M and Virginia Commonwealth Universities.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Friday, July 28, 2017

What's in a Grade? It depends on Whom You Ask

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Beckie Supiano

How precisely can professors evaluate students' work?  That question was at the heart if a recent debate over whether to change the grading system at Eastern Washington University.

Eastern Washington had long awarded course grades on a 4.0 system, in which grades are given to the tenths decimal place, offering many more options for professors than the more conventional letter system.  Instead of awarding an A or an A-minus, for instance, professors might give a 3.7, 3.8, 3.9, or 4.0.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Interviews on Women and Harassment in Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

Academe Blog
By Irene Ngun
July 21, 2017

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine is conducting a study of the impacts of gender-related experiences on women in science, engineering, and medical fields, and they have contracted with RTI International to gather information for the study.  RTI International plans to conduct one-hour, in-depth telephone interviews with approximately 40 women faculty members in science, engineering, and medical fields at research institutions who have been personally impacted by any of the following behaviors in a professional setting within the past 5 years:

  • Someone making repeated, unwanted sexual advances to you
  • Someone using pressure or manipulation to get you to agree to sexual contact
  • Inappropriate or sexual remarks, sexual oriented jokes, or comments about cognitive or intellectual sex differences
If you meet these criteria and are interested in being considered for the study, please complete a brief screening form here.

Thanks for your support!

Uncertainty on Trump's Transgender Order

Inside Higher Ed
By Nick Roll
July 27, 2017

On Wednesday morning, President Donald Trump announced via Twitter that his administration would roll back previous guidelines that allowed transgender individuals to openly serve in the military.
"[P]lease be advised that the United States government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. military," Trump announced in a tweet.  "Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender [sic] in the military would entail"

It is unclear what impact this policy could have on U.S. service academies and other military programs, several of which either have or formerly had transgender students enrolled.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Professor Plans to Sue Evergreen State for $3.85M

Inside Higher Ed
By Scott Jaschik
July 27, 2017

Bret Weinstein, the Evergreen State College professor who became the target of student protests at Evergreen State College in May, is planning to sue the college for $3.85 million, The Olympian reported.  Weinstein faced threats such that, for a brief period, campus police suggested he remain off campus.  Weinstein angered some students by refusing to participate in a day in which white people were asked to stay off campus.  His filing about a suit states that the college "permitted, cultivated, and perpetuated a racially hostile and retaliatory work environment...

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Great Conference Con?

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
July 25, 2017

Scholars -- particularly those working off the tenure track, with little to no access to institutional funds -- have long criticized the costs associated with attending academic conferences.  But a recent round of criticism comes from tenure-track and tenured professors, as well, with some proposing alternative means of meeting in response to logistical, political and . of course, financial concerns.

"Yes, being an academic is a privilege, Yes, we are lucky to get to see the insides of conference centers the world over.  And yes, we need to have a discussion abut the costs we're required to pay to keep this privilege," Pamela L. Gay, an assistant research professor of astronomy at Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville, wrote in a Medium blog post called "The Unacknowledged Costs of Academic Travel."

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Purge of Turkish Academics is "Staggering"

Academe Blog
By Hank Reichman
July 21, 2017

In the year since the attempted coup in Turkey, a "staggering" number of academics have faced criminal investigations, detentions, prosecutions, mass dismissal, expulsion and restrictions on travel, according to an open letter to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Turkey, signed by Quinn, executive director of Scholars at Risk (SAR), the New York University-based scholar network, and reported in University World News.

Shortly after hundreds of thousands of people joined a mass rally in Istanbul on July 16 against the Erdoğan regime, the government announced that it had arrested almost 900 people over the previous week, including 72 university staff.  On July 13, the state announced that some 302 scholars had been dismissed from their jobs for their alleged links to the Gülen movement, which is blamed for the failed military coup.

Read the full article at the Academe Blog website here.

Organizing, Organization, and the AAUP

Academe Blog
By Hank Reichman
July 20, 2017

If there's an organized outrage machine, we need an organized response".  Those words from Tessie McMillan Cottom, assistant professor of sociology at Virginia Commonwealth University, author of the excellent Lower Ed, prolific blogger, and frequent (and often witty) presence on Twitter, headline a story in this morning's Chronicle of Higher Education on the growing epidemic of online (and also direct) harassment of the left-leaning, very minority, faculty members to which the AAUP has been calling attention for some time (see also our successful fight to defend the academic freedom of Trinity College professor Johnny Williams).  The Chronicle report summarizes a useful essay Cottom posted to her blog tat provides concrete advice for dealing with "orchestrated outrage and social media attacks on academic legitimacy."  As Drexel professor George Cicciarello-Maher, a target of such harassment earlier this year, told the Chronicle, "Some faculty think this is about a handful of individuals when in reality, it's about all of us."

Read the full article at the Academe Blog here.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

'If There's an Organized Outrage Machine, We Need an Organized Response'

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Chris Quintana
July 18, 2017

Anticipating the possibility of an internet mob harassing a professor because of something he or she said can seem a bit like prepping for a lightening bolt.  Yes, people get stuck by lightening, but more often than not it feels like a freak occurrence.  It's easily avoided, some might say, by not flying a kite in a thunderstorm.

But these strikes appear to have grown more common in recent months.  Sure a professor who calls for the hanging of President Trump should expect blowback, but it's hard to argue the same for, say, a professor who writes a lengthy essay on classical statues and how they have been co-opted by the modern white-nationalist movement.  These attacks also come at a time when a majority of Republican or right-leaning Americans harbor a negative view of the nation's higher education institutions.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Read the Academe Blog's response to this article titled, Organizing, Organization, and the AAUP, here.

Former Top Official in Obama's Education Dept. Is Named President of ACE

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Goldie Blumenstyk
July 20, 2017

Ted Mitchell, a top U.S. Department of Education official during the Obama administration and an architect of several of the college and student-loan accountability regulations the Trump administration is now trying to dismantle, was named on Thursday as the new president of the American Council on Education.

Mr. Mitchell said countering the "narrative that college doesn't matter anymore for individuals in society" would be among his highest priorities for the organization, which represents about 1,800 college presidents on national policy issues.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Victory for Academic Freedom at CSU Fullerton

Academe Blog
By Hank Reichman
July 18, 2017

In a victory for academic freedom and faculty rights, a California State University, Fullerton part-time anthropology lecturer facing dismissal after a fracas at a campus demonstration in February has been reinstated by order of an arbitrator.  The university's College Republicans had accused Eric Canin of striking one of them at the demonstration.  Canin denied hitting anyone, although he acknowledged that the confrontation got heated.

The incident took place February 8 as pro-Palestine students and counter-protesters marched through campus. Canin reportedly approached the counter-protesters and tried to rip a sign out of a student's hand.  He was accused of then striking another student who tried to step between them.  The Young Republicans' president, Chris Boyle, said he saw the hit and proceeded to restrain Canin until police arrived.  An internal investigation by the university determined that Canin did strike a protester.  As a result the university issued a letter of termination.

Read the full article at the Academe Blog here.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Worse Than It Seems

Inside Higher Ed
Colleen Flaherty
July 18, 2017

Like many debates about higher education, those about sexual harassment are often based on anecdotes and opinion.  To some, male professors in particular are victims in waiting of the PC police anxious to punish a stray comment.  To others, faculty harassers are finally being held accountable for sexually predatory behavior toward vulnerable students.

"A Systematic Look at a Serial Problem: Sexual Harassment of Students by University Faculty" seeks to cut through the noise with data analyzing nearly 300 faculty-student harassment cases for commonalities.  The study, which focused on complaints by graduate students, led to two major findings: most faculty harassers are accused of physical, not verbal, harassment, and more than half of cases -- 53 percent -- involved alleged serial harassers.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Brief Supports Climate Researchers in Public Records Request Case

AAUP National
July 17, 2017

On July 12, the AAUP yesterday submitted an amicus brief in support of the faculty members who have been subjected to intrusive public records requests for emails related to their climate-science research.  The AAUP brief, filed with the Arizona Court of Appeals in the case Energy & Environment Legal Institute v. Arizona Board of Regents, argues that the academic freedom to conduct research is essential to a vital university system and to the common good, and that this warrants protecting certain research records from disclosure.

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.

Academic Freedom Prevails at Trinity College

AAUP National
July 14, 2017

In a victory for academic freedom, the administration of Trinity College in Connecticut acknowledged today that Professor Johnny Williams's social media posts "were protected by academic freedom and did not violate Trinity College policies."

The administration's statement observed that "Our understanding of academic freedom in America today is rooted largely in a joint statement from 1940 by the American Association of University Professors and the Association of American Colleges that asserted the fundamental importance of academic freedom for the common good and the advancement of truth."

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.

Law School Accreditation Should Not Be Weakened

AAUP National
July 12, 2017

The AAUP this week submitted comments to the American Bar Association opposing proposed revisions to the ABA's accreditation standards that would eliminate a requirement that full-time faculty "teach more than one-half of the total credit hours offered by the law school in a year or more than two-thirds of student contact hours generated in that year."

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Long-Term Contracts for 1,500 Adjuncts

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
July 10, 2017

City of New York's 30,000-member faculty union fought for six years for a contract that ensured a handful of must-haves.  Among them was more job security for adjuncts, who previously taught on semester-to-semester appointments.

Now that provision--secured in a contract inked last summer -- is starting to materialize: some 1,500 long-serving adjuncts have been awarded three-year appointments, to begin this fall.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

One Activist Has Hundreds of Colleges Under the Gun to Fix Their Websites

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
July 6, 2017

After the 2016 presidential election, Marcie Lipsitt looked up the alma maters of Donald J. Trump's chief advisers and persuaded the Education Department to investigate them for illegally having websites inaccessible to people with disabilities.  At the height of this year's NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament, she similarly triggered federal scrutiny of the colleges represented in the "sweet sixteen" regional semifinals.  Morgan State University became one of her targets because she had met one of its blind students in Detroit Metropolitan Airport.

Ms. Lipsitt, a veteran disability-rights activist from Franklin, Mich., says she regards virtually any college as an easy target, because nearly all have web pages inaccessible to people who are blind or deaf, or who have motor or cognitive disabilities.

Read the full article at The Chronicle for Higher Education's website here.

Most Republicans Think Colleges Are Bad for the Country. Why?

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Clara Turnage
July 10, 2017

A majority of Republicans and right-leaning independents think higher education has a negative effect on the country, according to a new study released bu the Pew Research Center on Monday.  The same study has found a consistent increase in distrust of colleges ans universities since 2010, when negative perceptions among Republicans was measured at 32 percent.  That number now stands at 58 percent.

By comparison, 72 percent of Democrats or left-leaning Independents in the study said colleges ans universities have a positive impact on the United States.

Read the full article at The Chronicle for Higher Education's website here.


Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Letter Issued in Trinity Prof Suspension Case

AAUP National
June 27, 2017

The AAUP today issued a letter to Joanne Berger-Sweeney, president of the Trinity College, urging her to immediately reinstate professor Johnny Eric Williams to is normal faculty duties.  Professor Williams, an associate professor of sociology with twenty-one years of service at Trinity College, was placed on leave Monday evening after being targeted with a flood of threats following reports about his social media postings by the right-wing media outlet Campus Reform. (More background information here.)

The AAUP has long held that academic freedom includes the freedom to address the larger community with regard to any matter of social, political, economic, or other interest without institutional discipline or restraint, save in response to fundamental violations of professional ethics or statements that suggest disciplinary incompetence.

Read the full posting at the national AAUP website here.

Read the full letter here.

Sign a statement against targeted harassment of faculty.

Travel Ban Case to be Heard, Threats to Academic Freedom Remain High

AAUP National
June 26, 2017

This morning the Supreme Court announced that it will hear a legal challenge to Trump's exclusionary travel ban.  The case will be heard in the upcoming term that starts in October.

In the meantime, the ban on visitors from six Muslim-majority countries has been allowed to go into effect, with exemptions for foreign nationals "who have a credible claim of a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States."

We believe that the exclusion is at odds with the fundamental AAUP principles and our nation's historic commitment to the free exchange of ideas.

Read the full posting at the national AAUP website here.

Stand Against Targeted Threats and Harassment

AAUP National
June 22, 2017

We are dismayed that another faculty member, Johnny Eric Williams of Trinity College, has become the target of a flood of threats following reports about his social media postings by the right-wing media outlet Campus Reform.  In this case, the college was shut down for a day so that law enforcement officials could investigate threats to the college and to the faculty member.  This is the second time this month that an institution of higher education has had to close down in response to threats, disrupting education and creating an environment of fear on campus.

Read the full posting at the national AAUP website here.

SEC settles fraud case against for-profit college ITT

OregonLive
July 3, 2017
By The Washington Post

WASHINGTON-- The Securities and Exchange Commission has settled its fraud case against ITT Educational Services, but it continues to pursue top executives from the defunct for-profit college firm for deceiving investors about high rates of late payments and defaults on student loans backed by the firm.

A final judgement order filed Friday resolves civil fraud charges brought against the company two years ago for false and misleading statements about the failure of two in-house student-loan programs.  There is no monetary penalty, and the company did not admit any wrongdoing.

Read the full article at the OregonLive website here.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Proposed Israeli "Code of Ethics" Violates Academic Freedom

AAUP- National
June 19, 2017

The following is a statement of the AAUP and the American Federation of Teachers.

The code of ethics' that the government of Israel is considering for the country's academic institutions is a threat not only to academic freedom in Israel, but to Israel's standing as a democracy.  We join with colleagues in Israel's Association of University Heads, and with the National Union of Israel Students, in condemning it.

Read the full statement at the national AAUP website here.

Monday, June 19, 2017

AAUP Removes Two from Academic Freedom Censure List, Adds Two

June 17, 2017

U of Illinois and Phillips Community College Removed from Censure List; Spalding U and Community College of Aurora Added

Washington, D.C. - Delegates to the 103rd annual meeting of the American Association of University Professors voted today to remove the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign and Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas from the AAUP's list of administrations censured for violating principles and standards of academic freedom.  The vote recognized that both institutions had successfully amended problematic policies and addressed the conditions that had brought about the original censure.  Delegates also voted to impose censure on Spalding University (Kentucky) and the Community College of Aurora (Colorado), based on investigations conducted this year that revealed serious departures from principles and standards of academic freedom at those institutions.

Read the full article at the National AAUP website here.

Committee A 2017 Censure Recommendations

AAUP National
June 15, 2017

Committee A submitted the following resolutions regarding censure and censure removal for the annual delegation.

See the files and download them at the National AAUP website here.

Border Patrol Searches of Electronic Devices

AAUP National
June 13, 2017

In conjunction with the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, the AAUP is seeking information from any faculty members who have had their cell phones or other electronic devices searched by US border patrol officers at the nation's borders while travelling internationally.  The Knight First Amendment Institute is a recently created non-profit organization that works to defend an strengthen freedoms of speech and the press in the digital age through litigation, research, and education.

The AAUP is concerned with the chilling effect such searches may have on academic freedom and the invasion into the privacy of academic work.  We are looking into legal issues related to a US regulation that authorizes border patrol officers to search a traveler's cell phones and other electronic devices at the borders without any basis for suspecting that the person has done anything wrong.  The government enforces this policy against both American citizens as well as noncitizens, and there has been a sharp uptick in these types of searches over the past year.

Read the full article at the National AAUP website here.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Race, Ethnicity, and Gender of Full-Time Faculty at More Than 3,700 Institutions

The Chronicle of Higher Education
June 12, 2017

The sortable table below shows the percentages of full-time faculty members who were members of specific racial and ethnic groups at degree-granting colleges and universities in November 2015.

View the interactive table at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.



Scholars See Bad Omens in Pulled Sponsorship of 'Julius Caesar'

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Fernando Zamudio-Suaréz
June 12, 2017

After Delta Air Lines and Bank of America pulled their sponsorship from the New York Public Theater's production of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, scholars were quick to lampoon the decision.

This year's free Public Theater performance sets Shakespeare's drama in modern dress, and presents Julius Caesar as a figure resembling President Trump - complete with blond hair, blue suit, and gold bathtub, according to a review in The New York Times.

Verena Dobnik, AP Images
Read the full article at The Chronicle for Higher Education's website here.


Another Appeals Court Rejects Trump's Travel Ban

Inside Higher Ed
By Elizabeth Redden
June 13, 2017

A second federal appeals court ruled Monday against President Trump's travel ban, upholding an injunction imposed by a lower court.  The Trump administration has asked the Supreme Court to rule on the president's executive order banning entry into the U.S. for nationals of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, which Trump argues is necessary to prevent the entry of terrorists.  Critics of the ban see it as a pretext for banning the entry of Muslims, a step Trump called for in his campaign.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, which is based in Virginia, had already ruled against the Trump administration, finding that the travel ban amounted to religious discrimination.  In its ruling Monday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which is based in California, found that the president had exceeded his authority in issuing the order, which also suspended and capped the refugee admissions program.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Jordan Schnitzer gives PSU $5 million for art museum in downtown Portland

OregonLive
By Andrew Theen
June 8, 2017

Jordan Schnitzer, the Portland real estate developer and philanthropist, will give $5 million to Portland State University to open an art museum in the heart of campus.

The school and the Portland native announced the gift during a Thursday morning news conference.  The 7,500-square-foot art museum will bear Schnitzer's name and occupy parts of two floors of Neuberger Hall.

A rendering of the proposed Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art.
(Courtesy of PSU)
Read the full article at the OregonLive website here.


Wednesday, June 7, 2017

GOP Skeptical on Trump Budget

Inside Higher Ed
By Andrew Kreighbaum
June 7, 2017

Washington -- When Education Secretary Betsy DeVos makes an appearance before lawmakers on Capitol Hill, one would expect a hostile reception from Democrats who have opposed her since she was nominated for the job.  Less expected is open skepticism from Republicans.

That's exactly what DeVos got Tuesday, however, at a Senate appropriations subcommittee hearing on the proposed White House budget for 2018 which includes deep cuts to education programs as well as other nondefense spending.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.


Monday, June 5, 2017

As New Threat Closes Evergreen State, Students Rip Legislation That Would Cut Its Funding

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Chris Quintana
June 5, 2017

A student-government organization in Washington State on Monday condemned proposed legislation that would strip funding from Evergreen State College, an institution embroiled in student protests and allegations of racism.

The statement was issued by the Washington Student Association, which represents college students statewide, on the same day that classes at Evergreen were canceled for a third weekday in a row so local law-enforcement officials could "review new external threat information received over the weekend."

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Colleges Declare They Are 'Still In' on Paris Goals

Inside Higher Ed
By Scott Jaschik
June 5, 2017

Many college and university presidents have signed a statement -- "We Are Still In" -- that will be released today.  The statement will also be signed by governors, mayors and business leaders -- all pledging to continue efforts to meet the environmental goals outlined in the Paris Agreement, the pact from which President Trump announced last week that he would withdraw the United States.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.


Tuesday, May 30, 2017

5 Forces That Drive Administrative 'Bloat'

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Audrey Williams June
May 25, 2017

The state auditor of California last month released a report saying that the California State University system had hired managers at more than twice the rate of other employees over a nine-year period without explaining why it needed to bring on so any people.

"Campuses were often unable to justify the number of management personnel they hired," the report said, "and consequently they could not demonstrate that they are providing these services in the most cost-effective manner."

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

'I Won't Give Up': How First-Generation Students See College

The New York Times
By Elizabeth A. Harris
May 30, 2017

Getting into college and making it through can be hard no matter what your circumstances.  But for first-generation students - the first in their families to attend college - the challenges are even greater because they must tackle them largely on their own.  Students whose parents have gone to college can draw on that experience, perhaps talking to them about filling out applications or picking a major.  Many college-educated parents also help their children financially, or provide a cushion if things go awry.

New York Times
But, said Dr. Michael V. Drake, president of Ohio State University, a lot of first-generation students have feelings of doubts of whether they really belong.  They can't call home and ask their parents how college was for them.  "I think all those things that pertain to being the first anyone who's doing something, you really are a pioneer," Dr. Drake said.  "That can be exhilarating, but it can also be a little unnerving."

Read the full article at the New York Times website here.


Friday, May 26, 2017

A Damaging Budget Proposal

AAUP- National
May 26, 2017

The Trump administration's budget proposal for the 2018 fiscal year would make drastic cuts to education, slashing federal student aid and research funding.  The proposal, released May 22, fleshes out the "skinny budget" released by the administration in March.

Read the full article with information on cuts in student aid, arts and humanities, science, and international education at the AAUP website here.


Thursday, May 25, 2017

NLRB Issues Second Decision Allowing the Unionization of Undergraduates

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
May 24, 2017

The National Labor Relations Board has cleared the way for the unionization of student employees of the University of Chicago's libraries, marking the second time this spring that it has declared undergraduate students eligible to bargain collectively.

In a ruling handed down on Tuesday, Peter Sung Ohr, director of the NLRB's regional office in Chicago, rejected the university's argument that the paid student workers in its libraries should be precluded from unionization because its relationship with them is primarily educational.  Undergraduates account for the overwhelmingly majority of the more than 220 student workers that the decision allows to on forming a collective-bargaining unit, which would be affiliated with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Yale Grad Students' Fast Ends: What Did It Achieve

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Vimal Patel
May 23, 2017

A month long fast by Yale University graduate students advocating for a union ended Monday with mixed success: Protesters attracted plenty of national and even international attention, but the university is no longer closer to taking a seat at the collective-bargaining table.

Graduate students at private colleges won the right to form unions in a National Labor Relations Board ruling in August.  Since then many campuses have held union elections.  Students voted overwhelmingly to unionize at some places, like Columbia University, while drives in others, like Duke University were soundly defeated.

Read the full at the Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Monday, May 22, 2017

"I Was a Threat Because I Wouldn't Be Quiet"

AAUP- National
May 16, 2017

An investigative report released today by the American Association of University Professors concludes that the administration of Spalding University in Louisville, Kentucky, summarily dismissed Erlene Grise-Owens, a long serving professor of social work, in blatant violation of academic freedom and due process.  An AAUP investigating committee visited Louisville and interviewed Professor Grise-Owens and other current and former Spalding faculty members.  Members of the Spalding administration declined to meet with the committee.

Read the full report at the AAUP website here.

Legislation on Free Speach

AAUP- National
May 11, 2017

Several state legislatures have recently passed or reintroduced legislation that addresses issues related to campus free speech.  Given the important role of colleges and universities in debate, dissent, and the free exchange of ideas, the AAUP strongly supports freedom of expression on campus and the rights of faculty and students to invite speakers of their choosing.  We oppose, however, any legislation that interferes with the institutional autonomy of colleges and universities by undermining the role of faculty, administrations, and governing board in institutional decision-making and the role of students in the formulation and application of institutional policies affecting student affairs.  The appropriate institutional regulations on campus free speech and protest, the invitation of outside speakers, and student discipline should be adopted through normal channels of institutional governance, and such regulations should be consistent with Association-approved statements on Freedom of Expression and Campus Speech Codes, Academic Freedom and Outside Speakers, and the Joint Statement on Rights and Freedom of Students.

Read the original post on the AAUP website here.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Mills College Declares Financial Emergency and May Cut 30 to 35 Jobs

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Charles Huckabee
May 16, 2017

Mills College, a liberal-arts institution for women in Oakland, Calif., declared a financial emergency on Tuesday as a first step toward dealing with financial challenges, including a projected $9.1-million deficit in the coming fiscal year.

In a news release and in a statement emailed to faculty, staff, and students on Tuesday afternoon, the college described the Board of Trustees' approval of the declaration of emergency as a step that authorizes Mills to restructure all of its expenses in pursuit of financial stability.

Read the full article in The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Bradley Foundation Bankrolls Attacks on Unions

The Center for Media and Democracy
By Mary Bottari
May 8, 2017

Documents examined by the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) expose a national effort by the Milwaukee-based Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation to defund and dismantle unions, the most significant force for higher wages and better working conditions in America.

The Center for Media and Democracy
Publicly, the Bradley Foundation spins this agenda as "employee rights."  Behind the scenes, newly disclosed Bradley documents detail an aggressive political agenda.

Read the full article at the Center for Media and Democracy's website here.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Statement on the UNC Center for Civil Rights

AAUP- National
By AAUP President Rudy Fichtenbaum
May 8, 2017

Founded in 2001 by the legendary African American civil rights attorney Julius Chambers, the UNC Center for Civil Rights brings together students and faculty, as well as policy experts and practicing attorneys, to advocate for the poor and for racial and ethnic minorities.  It focuses on legal and social issues in the area of education, housing, community development, economic justice, and voting rights.

One of the critical functions of the center is to train students by giving them hands on experience with litigation.  Clearly the work of the center, including its litigation work, is consistent with the mission of the University of North Carolina, of which it is a part.  UNC's mission statement recognizes the value of public service in that it contributes "to the solution of societal problems and enriches the quality of life in the State."  Efforts to prevent the center from engaging in litigation represents a challenge to both the principles of academic freedom and shared governance.

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.


University of Chicago Graduate Employees File to Form Union

AAUP-National
May 8, 2017

Today a strong majority of graduate employees at the Unversity of Chicago filed authorization cards with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to hold a formal union recognition election.  Members of the Graduate Students United (GSU) personally visited the regional NLRB office to deliver the cards, signed by grad workers from six of the university divisions.  The union will be affiliated with the AAUP, the Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT), and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT).

The next step is an official election for union recognition, which will conclude by the end of June, with more than 2,000 graduate workers eligible to vote.

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.


Better Prospects for Unemployment Compensation

AAUP- National
May 5, 2017

New guidance from the United States Department of Labor heightens the potential for faculty on contingent appointments to get unemployment compensation over breaks between semesters.  The guidance, Unemployment Insurance Programs Letter No. 05-17, explains the unemployment compensation standards applied to contingent faculty members and increases the likelihood that they will be eligible for unemployment.

The AAUP, along with a coalition of other organizations provided information to the labor department regarding the changed reality of contingent faculty on university campuses.  The recent guidance, echoing themes raised with the department and articulated by the AAUP for years, explicitly acknowledged that "the employment model educational institutions follows has changed appreciably, particularly for institutions of higher education.  In higher education the use of part-time instructors, often referred to as "adjunct" or "contingent" faculty, has increased significantly."

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Women in Leadership Searches

Inside Higher Ed
By Rick Seltzer
May 1, 2017

A study presented Friday at the American Educational Research Association's annual meeting shines some light on the way women are hired for top higher education leadership positions in searches involving third-party executive search firms.

For the study, Harvard Ph.D. student Jeraul C. Mackey obtained access to proprietary data from a search firm that remained anonymous.  The data covered almost 500 searches over an eight-year period starting in 2009.  Mackey ultimately analyzed a subset of the data covering 250 searches for two- and four-year public and private nonprofit institutions.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.


'Volatile' but Growing Online ED Market

Inside Higher Ed
By Carl Straumsheim
May 2, 2017

In fall 2012, the University of Phoenix soared above other distance education providers.  At the time, more than 256,000 students took at least one online course there--nearly 200,000 more than the next institution on the list.  Southern New Hampshire University, by the same metric, ranked 50th.

Three years later, Phoenix still topped the list, but the number of students taking at least one online course there had dropped by nearly 100,000.  SNHU, meanwhile, had seen roughly fivefold increase, climbing 46 spots to No. 4.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.


3 Deans Are Suddenly Dismissed at Florida A&M

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Alex Arriaga
May 2, 2017

Florida A&M University's deans of pharmacy, journalism, and education were dismissed on Monday, effective immediately.

Rodner Wright, the interim provost, announced that Ann Kimbrough, of the School of Journalism and Graphic Communication; Michael Thompson, of the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Services; and Traki L. Taylor, of the College of Education, had been removed from their posts.  Interim replacements will take their positions immediately, the Tallahassee Democrat reported.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

With Final Exams Looming, Faculty Strikes at U. of Illinois at Springfield

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Adam Harris
May 2, 2017

Faculty members at the University of Illinois at Springfield began a strike on Tuesday after failing to reach an agreement on a new contract with the administration, The State Journal-Register reports.  A message posted Monday evening on the website of UIS United Faculty, the faculty union, by its executive board and negotiating team opened plainly: " Bad news. Strike is on."

Both tenured and tenure-track faculty members took to the picket lines on Tuesday, during the last week of classes and just a week before final examinations are scheduled.  "As you know, we have been bargaining for some time now on reappointment, tenure, and promotion language that recognizes existing policy, and which would have protections to ensure the fairness and integrity of the process," the union's website said.  The university has been negotiating with the faculty union for several months.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Want Happier Professors? Try Being Nice

The Chronicle of  Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
April 28, 2017

When it comes to keeping tenured professors content in their jobs, you can catch more flies with honey than you can with big faculty-focused strategic narratives, a new study suggests.

The study, based on survey data from more than 3,600 recently tenured associate professors at doctoral universities, found that their organizational commitment hinged far more on whether they believed they worked in a caring, supportive environment than on their sense that administrators had undertaken broad efforts to support the faculty.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Monday, May 1, 2017

In Trump's First 100 Days, Higher Ed Sees More Shadow Than Substance

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Adam Harris
April 28, 2017

At an October campaign rally in Columbus, Ohio, Donald Trump, then the Republican nominee for president, gave his most substantive speech on higher education policy.  He suggested a simplification of income-driven repayment plans for student-loan borrowers and railed against government regulations - a staple of his campaign.  Mr. Trump vowed that is he became president, he would "immediately take steps to drive down college costs by reducing the unnecessary costs of compliance with federal regulations so that colleges can pass on the savings to students in the form of lower tuition."
Drew Angerer/ Getty Images

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.


Friday, April 28, 2017

In the age of Trump, can labor unite?

In These Times
By Alexandra Bradbury
April 26, 2017

You know you're getting the short end of the stick as a worker, but you don't really know why," says Joe Tarulli, a Staten Island Verizon tech who's put in 17 years with the company.  "They make it seem like these rich people are just lucky they got the right chances, and these poor old working folks, nothing ever goes right for them.  No!  These corporations are doing it on purpose."

In These Times May 2017 Issue
Last spring Tarulli and 39,000 Verizon workers were forced out on a 49-day strike to fend off outsourcing and other concessions demanded by the company, even as it raked in billions of profits.  Democratic primary candidate Bernie Sanders walked the picket line with them to draw media attention to their battle against corporate greed.  But in the general election, Tarulli says many of his coworkers went on to vote for Donald Trump, who spoke to the anger that had motivated them to strike in the first place.  "Trump's a great communicator," says Tarulli.  "For a long time people felt ignored, even by their own unions, because these companies take advantage of them so badly."

Read the full article at the In These Times website here.


Thursday, April 27, 2017

A Worrisome Harbinger of Changes in Copyright Law

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Pamela Samuelson
April 23, 2017

With all the dysfunction in the White House and Capitol Hill this year, you might think that the copyright bills pending before Congress do not need your attention.  Think again.  Momentum is building for three of these measures, and their impact on institutions of higher education will not be welcome.

The most likely of the bills to pass (and scheduled this week) is the Register of Copyrights Selection and Accountability Act of 2017.  It has bipartisan support from 32 cosponsors in the House, and endorsement of three key members of the Senate Judiciary Committee.  The bill calls for the Register of Copyrights to be a presidential appointee for a 10-year term, subject to Senate confirmation.  This bill has already been reported out of the House Judiciary Committee.

Boris Séméniako for The Chronicle
Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

After a Week of Protest, U. of Utah Cancer Researcher Is Reinstated

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Alex Arriaga
April 25, 2017

A week after the University of Utah announced that the chief executive and director of its Huntsman Cancer Institute was leaving her post, she's been reinstated.

"Effective today we have changed HCI's reporting structure, and Dr. Beckerle will report directly to the president of the university," the statement said.  "I am grateful for her committed leadership and look forward to working with her in the coming years."

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

This is a follow up to the article, Top Researcher's Departure Prompts Faculty Protest at U. of Utah Institute which can be read here.


Monday, April 24, 2017

Enrollment Declines, Transfer Barriers: Community College President's Survey

Inside Higher Ed
By Ashley A. Smith and Doug Lederman
April 21, 2017

Six in 10 leaders of community colleges say their enrollments have declined in the past three years, including 21 percent who say enrollment is down by 10 percent or more, according to Inside Higher Eds 2017 Survey of Community College Presidents.

The survey, conducted by Gallup, is based on responses from 236 leaders of two-year colleges, who were queried about recruitment, the future of free community college and the emerging talent pool for new presidents, among other topics.

Read the full article and survey results at the Inside Higher Ed website here.




In the DeVos Era, New Higher-Ed Policy Could Come From the Senate

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Adam Harris
April 24, 2017

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Recent moves by the Education Department have raised the alarms of students, advocates, and reformers alike.  But the executive branch is not the only place where policy is set.  In recent years, the U.S. Senate has taken the lead on policies that have left a sharp imprint on higher education.  So what will legislators be able to accomplish on higher ed this Congress?

The U.S. Senate Committee on Heath, Education, Labor, and Pensions has, over the last several years, successfully advanced a fair amount of bipartisan legislation.  But several early disputes may strain that bipartisanship, weakening the chances of reauthorizing the Higher Education Act.  The most recent act, which is the major piece of legislation governing policy on post secondary education, was set to expire in 2013, but was extended through last year to allow legislators more time to work on an updated version.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.


2 Illinois Professors Were Laid Off. Then They Got Tenure. Now What?

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Sarah Brown
April 21, 2017
Holly Stovall, a professor of women's studies at Western
Illinois U., received word that she would be laid off about six
months before she got tenure. "The sense of betrayal is really
traumatic for me." she says.

On May 6, 2016, Holly A. Strovall received the news she'd spent much of her life working toward.

Jack Thomas, president of Western Illinois University, told the women's studies scholar that, after more than a decade on the faculty, she was one step away from receiving tenure.  Once the institution's Board of Trustees signed off, it would be official.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.


Resident Advisers Gain the Right to Unionize

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
April 21, 2017

George Washington U./ Getty Images
The right to unionize has been extended to resident advisers at private colleges, thanks to a National Labor Relations Board officer's decision involving George Washington University.

The unprecedented ruling, by Sean R. Marshall, acting regional director of the NLRB's Baltimore office, could open the door to efforts to unionize resident advisers and other undergraduate employees throughout private higher education.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.


Thursday, April 20, 2017

Support for public higher education rose in 33 states and declined in 17 in 2016

The Chronicle of Higher Education
Illinois and Everyone Else
By Rick Seltzer
April 20, 2017

It's impossible to examine state higher education finances in 2016 without separating the collapse in Illinois from a more nuanced picture across the rest of the country.

State and local support for higher education in Illinois plunged as the state's law makers and governor were unable to reach a budget agreement and instead passed severely pared-down stopgap funding.  Educational appropriations per full-time equivalent student in the state skidded 80 percent year over year, from $10,986 to $2,196.  Enrollment in public institutions dropped by 11 percent, or 46,000 students.

Read the full article with a link to the report at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

AAUP Supports College For All Act

AAUP
April 19, 2017

The AAUP endorsed the College for All Act, introduced this month by Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Pramila Jayapal, which would make four-year public college free for families making less than $125,000 and make community college free for all.  Funding would come from a Wall Street speculation tax.  It would also student loan debts by cutting all student loan interest rates for new borrowers while also preventing the federal government from profiting off the student-loan program.  The College for All Act restores the promise that higher education is an accessible public good, not a privilege for the wealthy few.

Rudy Fichtenbaum, AAUP president said, "The College for All Act reaffirms our commitment to quality, public higher education as a right for all Americans.  It would expand access to higher education and would help former students already saddled with large student debt to refinance at rates that are offered for new student loans.  It would cut down on the abuse of adjunct labor and strengthen academic freedom protections by increasing the percentage of tenured and tenured-track faculty.  The AAUP is proud to endorse the College for All Act."

Read the College for All fact sheet here.
Read the College for All Act here.

Read the original article on the AAUP website here.


Baylor U.'s Pick as New President Will Be First Woman at Its Helm

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Fernanda Zamudio-Suaréz
April 18, 2017

Linda A. Livingstone, dean and professor of management at the George Washington University School of Business, will be the new president of Baylor University, it announced on Tuesday in a news release.

She will be the first woman to serve as president of the Texas institution, the world's largest Baptist university, and will take office on June 1.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Top Researcher's Departure Prompts Faculty Protest at U. of Utah Institute

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Alex Arriaga
April 18, 2017

After 11 years as chief executive and director of the University of Utah's Huntsman Cancer Institute, Mary Beckerle will leave the posts, a move that has faculty members upset.

The university's senior vice president for health services, Vivian Lee, notified the faculty in an email on Monday but did not offer an explanation, according to The Salt Lake Tribune.

Read the f ull article at The Chronicle for Higher Education website here.

Berkeley Cancels Speech by Ann Coulter, citing Possibility of Rioting

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Chris Quintana
April 19, 2017

Citing security concerns, administrators at the University of California at Berkeley have cancelled a planned speech by the right-wing commentator Ann Coulter.
Photo: Fernando Leon

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that vice chancellors at the university emailed the student groups hosting the event on Tuesday night with the news of the cancelled event.

Read the full article at the Chronicle of Higher Education website here.