Notes & Coffee: April 16 - 22

Notes & Coffee is here to keep you informed of all the trending student affairs and higher ed news stories most critical to our field as they develop. In the age of information overload, we’re here to bring you vetted examinations of the stories that matter to our field. We invite you to start your week with Notes & Coffee.    

Another higher ed bill stalled in Congress – “With bipartisan talks over a Senate bill to renew the Higher Education Act seemingly stalled and a polarizing House bill having gone nowhere after a party-line committee vote, Congress seems increasingly unlikely to reauthorize the key higher education law in 2018.” 

The pros and cons of Purdue’s 7-year freeze – “A high-profile multiyear tuition freeze has catapulted Purdue University to the top of many observers’ lists of well-managed public universities, casting President Mitch Daniels as a budget cutter without peer.”

A federal experiment flounders – “In October 2015, the Obama administration announced a radical experiment to give low-income students access to boot camps, massive open online courses and other nondegree credentials, mostly from for-profit alternative providers… The program's goals were beyond ambitious -- and so far it has achieved few if any of them, leading even strong supporters to say that it has ‘floundered.’ Eight pilot programs were selected in August 2016, but it was not until this month that the first program received final approval to launch -- a year later than expected. And three of the eight programs have dropped out.” 

100 top colleges vow to enroll more low-income students – “College access and affordability: It's a common topic in higher education — because college is the one place that can really be a catapult when it comes to moving up the economic ladder. And yet, research has shown that low-income students make up just 3 percent of the students that attend America's most selective colleges. And, it's not that these students just aren't there — every year tens of thousands of top students who don't come from wealthy families never even apply to elite colleges.”

At what cost wi-fi? – “Gaming consoles, tablets, smart speakers, minifridges that text you when you run out of beer -- these are just some of the internet-connected items students are now bringing with them to their residence halls. Not every device is for entertainment, however -- phones, tablets and laptops might (at least sometimes) get used for academic purposes. But with so many Wi-Fi-enabled devices, colleges are struggling to keep up with students’ expectation that wireless internet should be free, fast and everywhere.” 

More Notes

Syracuse fraternity suspended for “extremely racist” video

University Press of New England will shut down

New limits on overtime

Commencement speakers announced part I

Commencement speakers announced part II