All posts by Nick DeSantis


Tech Company Will Pay $750 Million to End Patent Fight With Carnegie Mellon

The Marvell Technology Group and Marvell Semiconductor Inc. will pay $750 million to end a long-running patent dispute with Carnegie Mellon University, the university announced on Wednesday. Carnegie Mellon sued in 2009, alleging that the company had infringed a pair of university patents based on the work of a professor and a former student.

In 2012 a federal jury awarded the university more than $1 billion in damages, but the case has been through several rounds of appeals since then.

Subra Su…


U. of Texas President Finalizes Plan to Carry Out Guns-on-Campus Law

The University of Texas at Austin’s president on Wednesday finalized a task force’s recommendations for carrying out a new campus-carry law that has drawn widespread criticism from faculty members.

The president’s plan, like the task force’s proposals, largely bans concealed firearms from on-campus dormitories and prohibits them from being carried in laboratories where their presence could be especially dangerous. But the plan does not exclude concealed guns from classrooms, a proposal that has


Mount St. Mary’s President Stays in Office as Students Rally to Support Him

A photo posted by Molly McShalley (@mcshalleym) on

Simon P. Newman rejected a call by faculty members to resign as president of Mount St. Mary’s University by Monday morning, as students staged a rally on the Maryland campus to show their support for the embattled leader.

Mr. Newman has been under fire for weeks about a controversial freshman-retention plan and a blunt metaphor that he used to describe at-risk students. The backlash his comments provoked intensi…


Fraternity Releases Findings on Racist Chant by Oklahoma Chapter

The national office of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity on Wednesday released the findings of an investigation into an incident last year at the University of Oklahoma that involved a racist chant sung by members of its chapter there.

Video of the chant, which gained national attention within hours of its release online, fueled twin conversations about race and the role of fraternities in modern student life. Oklahoma’s president, David L. Boren, quickly expelled the two students who were caug…


Florida State to Pay $950,000 to Settle Title IX Suit by Quarterback’s Accuser

[Updated (1/25/2016, 6:39 p.m.) with more on the disposition of the settlement money.]

Florida State University will pay $950,000 to settle a federal Title IX lawsuit filed by a former student who said she had been raped by a star quarterback for the Seminoles, USA Today reports. The university also agreed to make a five-year commitment to prevention and training programs.

The plaintiff, Erica Kinsman, sued the university a year ago, and in August a judge rejected Florida State’s bid to dismiss …


Board Chair Blasts Faculty Group for Undermining ‘Drown the Bunnies’ President

The chairman of the Board of Trustees at Mount St. Mary’s University of Maryland on Friday blamed a “small group of faculty” for what he called the “deliberate mischaracterization” of a retention program that recently landed the institution’s president in hot water.

The president, Simon P. Newman, a former businessman, drew intense scrutiny after the campus newspaper published an article asserting that he had said faculty members shouldn’t think of at-risk students as “cuddly bunnies” but …


Labor Board Will Hear Columbia U. Graduate Students’ Bid to Unionize

The National Labor Relations Board on Wednesday agreed to hear a bid by graduate students at Columbia University to form a labor union.

The full board’s decision to hear the case follows a regional official’s ruling in October that rejected the Columbia students’ union petition. At the time, the regional officer cited a 2004 decision, involving graduate students at Brown University, that has largely blocked such students from forming unions at private colleges. Unions at public colleges are go…


Higher One to Pay Penalty and Compensate Consumers for Deceptive Practices

The student-debit-card company Higher One and WEX Bank will pay civil penalties and a total of $31 million to some 900,000 consumers over deceptive practices related to their financial products, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced on Wednesday.

The federal regulator said it had concluded that Higher One and WEX Bank omitted key details about a debit-card product known as OneAccount, leading Higher One to improperly collect $31 million in fees from students. The FDIC ordered Highe…


Title IX Covers Bias Based on Sexual Orientation, Judge Rules

A federal judge in California has ruled that the federal gender-equity law known as Title IX covers discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, finding that such bias falls under the law’s ban on sex- and gender-based discrimination.

The Los Angeles Times reports that the ruling, by Judge Dean D. Pregerson of the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, allows a lawsuit against Pepperdine University that was filed by two members of its women’s basketball team to proceed. The plaintiffs alleg…


U.S. Investigates For-Profit Ashford U. Over Marketing to Students

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Federal Student Aid is investigating Bridgepoint Education Inc.’s Ashford University over the for-profit college’s marketing practices and other matters, the company said on Thursday in a corporate filing.

Bridgepoint said the federal office was looking into “representations made by Ashford University to potential and enrolled students, and has asked the company and Ashford University to assist in its assessment of Ashford University’s compliance …