Judge Declines to Stop the Closure of Sweet Briar College

A state judge in Virginia on Wednesday declined to stop the closure of Sweet Briar College, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports. Considering a suit brought by the Amherst County attorney, Judge James W. Updike Jr. of Bedford Circuit Court imposed a 60-day injunction prohibiting the college from using charitable contributions on the closure. But it may continue shutting down.

At issue in Wednesday’s arguments was the question of whether the college had violated Virginia’s charitable-solicitation…


After Pressure From Lawmakers, 2-Year Campus in Conn. Will Stay Open

The head of the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities System said on Wednesday that a campus of Middlesex Community College that had been slated for closure in the face of proposed budget cuts would stay open after all, following intense pressure from members of the state’s legislature, The Connecticut Mirror reported.

The State Senate and House of Representatives recently passed legislation to block the proposed closure and to bar the system from closing any campus without the legislature’s approval. College administrators acted to close Middlesex’s Meriden Center campus without a vote by the state’s Board of Regents for Higher Education.

Gregory W. Gray, the head of the Connecticut system, said on Wednesday that the campus would remain open and that he was depending on the state to provide it with financial support.

Gray told reporters after the board meeting that the bill was “bad legislation,” saying that if a tornado hit Eastern Connecticut State University he would need the legislature’s approval to close the campus.

Asked about the future of the Meriden campuses if state funding is ultimately cut as the governor recommends, Gray said he will follow the law.

“We will somehow follow the statutes,” he said.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has not yet signed the bill, and it is unclear whether he will do so.

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Adjunct Professors Demand $15,000 per Course in National Protests

Adjunct instructors joined low-wage workers on Wednesday in a national protest to demand higher pay. The Fight for 15 campaign — in which fast-food, retail, and health-care employees demand a $15 minimum wage and adjuncts demand $15,000 per course — was organized by the Service Employees International Union, which represents many part-time instructors.

Here are some scenes from the protests, as seen on Twitter:


Stanford Is Roiled by Claim of Anti-Semitism in Student Election

Stanford University is investigating allegations that a student group made anti-Semitic remarks to a candidate in a recent student election, The New York Times reports. Molly Horwitz, the candidate, told the college that the Students of Color Coalition had asked her in an interview how her Jewish identity would affect her vote on divestment from Israel. The Undergraduate Senate voted in February to ask the university to divest from companies that do business in the West Bank, but the Board of Trustees said it would not take such a vote.

Tianay Pulphus, president of the Stanford chapter of the NAACP, called Ms. Horwitz’s claim “baseless.” Stanford is investigating and said it had received “conflicting accounts” of the interview.

A similar controversy played out earlier this year at the University of California at Los Angeles, where a Jewish student applying to be on a judicial panel was publicly questioned about whether her religious identity would interfere with her service on the panel.

LOS ANGELES – The debate over what constitutes anti-Semitism has spilled into Stanford University ‘s student government election, with a Jewish student claiming that she was asked how her Judaism affects her view of divestment from Israel, morphing what was a contest about campus issues into a fierce discussion on identity and loyalties.

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Colleges Embrace Branding Strategies, Report Indicates

Report: “The State of Higher Ed Branding: A Survey of Marketing Leaders”

Authors: Deborah Maue and Tom Hayes

Organization: mStoner Inc.

Summary: While many people in higher education remain uneasy about branding in the groves of academe, a new report indicates that it is becoming pervasive.

mStoner, a consulting firm, surveyed top marketing administrators at 125 four-year nonprofit colleges and universities for a report on the state of brand strategy in higher education. Brand-strategy projects …


Judge Tosses Lawsuit Over Education Dept.’s Firing of Debt Collectors

A federal judge has thrown out a lawsuit brought by a group of student-loan debt collectors that the U.S. Department of Education fired in March.

The ruling, which dismissed the collectors’ request for a stay of the agency’s decision, came just over a month after the department abruptly canceled its contracts with the companies — Coast Professional, Enterprise Recovery Systems, National Recoveries, Pioneer Credit Recovery, and West Asset Management — which it said had provided inaccurate inf…


In Early Iowa Campaign, Hillary Clinton Highlights College Affordability

Fresh off the announcement that she would run for president in 2016, Hillary Clinton visited a community college on Tuesday as part of her days-old campaign in Iowa. Here’s some of what she said about higher education in a roundtable discussion held at Kirkwood Community College:


Adjunct Instructors Are Called to Join Low-Wage Worker Protests

Adjunct instructors at dozens of colleges around the nation are expected on Wednesday to join low-wage worker protests being organized by the Service Employees International Union.

Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Los Angeles, New York, Phoenix, and Seattle are among the cities where adjuncts are expected to join low-wage workers in other industries to protest for better wages as part of the SEIU’s “Fight for 15” campaign.

While the construction, health-care, restaurant, and retail employees involve…


Minority-Serving Institutions Are More Apt to Use Learning Gauges Internally

Report: “Focused on What Matters: Assessment of Student Learning Outcomes at Minority-Serving Institutions”

Authors: Erick Montenegro and Natasha A. Jankowski

Organizations: National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment and Penn Center for Minority-Serving Institutions

Summary: Minority-serving institutions are more likely than those that predominantly serve white students to use assessments of student learning for internal purposes, such as strategic planning and budgeting.

They are also …


Connecticut Lawmakers Act to Keep 2-Year Campus Open

State lawmakers in Connecticut have moved to block the controversial planned closure of a community-college branch campus, and have taken their efforts a step further by approving a requirement that no community-college campus be closed without their consent, the Hartford Courant reported.

The State Senate passed the bill last week, and the House of Representatives did so on Tuesday. The legislature’s action followed a plan to close the Meriden Center branch of Middlesex Community College, whi…