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2009 May 3 - 12:00 am

NEWS BRIEFS:

  • Two More Charged In Alabama  Student Aid Investigation

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — A Mobile County grand jury has indicted two more people in the financial aid scandal at Bishop State Community College, bringing the total number of defendants to six.

A grand jury report says 40-year-old Yolanda Johnson and 52-year-old Elston Howard Turner, a former Bishop State basketball coach, were indicted on charges of theft by deception. Turner was also indicted on ethics charges.

More than 25 people have been charged with stealing tens of thousands of dollars in scholarship and aid funds since the scandal broke two years ago.

Johnson is accused of receiving financial aid from Bishop State while she was a full-time employee at a local bank.

Chief Assistant District Attorney Nicki Patterson said Johnson and Turner were married but didn’t tell anyone.

  • Wash. College Changes Name To Reflect New     4-Year Degrees

BELLEVUE, Wash. (AP) — Bellevue Community College has changed its name to Bellevue College.

College President Jean Floten says many people think community colleges award only associate degrees. Bellevue College will award its first bachelor’s degrees this spring.

The college launched its bachelor of applied science in radiation and imaging sciences program in the fall of 2007. It expects to award bachelor’s degrees to 18 students at commencement ceremonies June 18, with Gov. Chris Gregoire scheduled to be commencement speaker.

Bellevue College serves 35,000 students annually.

  • Parents: Son Who Killed Woman Was Mentally Ill

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — The parents of a community college student who killed himself and another student on campus near Detroit, say he suffered from mental illness but they didn’t think he would hurt somebody.

Doris and Sam Powell told The Detroit News they tried for years to get help for 28-year-old Anthony Powell’s depression. Police say the Detroit man used a shotgun to kill 20-year-old Asia McGowan and himself at Henry Ford Community College in Dearborn.

  • Ariz. College Approves  Tuition Increase Of 3.7 Percent

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Full-time, in-state students at Pima Community College will pay $60 more next year.

A 4-1 vote by the college district’s governing board raised tuition by $2 per credit hour.

Pima defines a full-time student as one carrying 15 hours per semester. However, charges are levied per credit hour, so students taking more than 30 hours a year would face more than the $60 increase.

The increase represents a 3.7 percent change from this year’s annual full-time in-state tuition of $1,605.

Full-time, out-of-state students also will also see an increase of $2 per credit hour, bringing their tuition to $90 per credit hour up to six hours or $255 per credit hour for seven or more hours.

Executive Vice Chancellor for Administration David Bea said the increase would generate about $1.3 million for the college district.

  • N. Y. Lawmaker Calls for Free Tuition For Veterans

SUFFERN, N.Y. (AP) — A local lawmaker wants veterans to get free tuition at Rockland Community College.

County Legislator Frank Sparaco of Valley Cottage wants to explore the aid for veterans who’ve served in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Federal veterans’ tuition assistance gets a boost on Aug. 1. But Sparaco says local tuition aid could keep Rockland veterans at home.

Residents pay $3,300 to attend RCC full-time for one academic year.

The college created a veterans outreach office this year to help vets transition to the classroom.

  • Illinois College’s Plan To Offer 4-Year Degrees Faces Criticism

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — As the Illinois Senate takes up a bid by a community college to offer bachelor’s degrees, representatives of the state’s universities are voicing opposition to the plan.

Harper College has announced its desire to offer bachelor’s degree programs
in public safety administration or technology management. Spokesman Phil Burdick says offering bachelor’s degrees will help working people who otherwise would have to drive hours to a state university.

While the plan recently gained the approval of the Illinois House, the Illinois Board of Higher Education has sent a letter to senators opposing the plan.

Illinois community colleges traditionally offer only associate degrees, allowing students to get started on a bachelor’s cheaply. Southern Illinois University spokesman Dave Gross says Harper College should stick to its mission.

  • Scholarship Program Reaches $10M Milestone

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) — The Kalamazoo Promise has reached a milestone.

The pioneering college scholarship program for graduates of Kalamazoo Public Schools has spent $10 million on tuition at Michigan’s state-funded universities and community colleges.

Program Director Janice Brown tells the Kalamazoo Gazette that nearly half the money has followed students to Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo or Kalamazoo Valley Community College.

The program was created in late 2005. It has helped about 1,150 students from the last three graduating classes.

About four out of every five recipients of the scholarships have remained in college.

Brown met with the program’s anonymous donors and presented figures to the Kalamazoo City Commission.

  • S. Dakota Colleges Offering New Degrees

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Presentation College in Aberdeen and Kilian Community College in Sioux Falls are expanding their partnership by adding three new degrees in Sioux Falls.

The two private institutions will jointly offer associate of science degrees in medical assisting and life style coaching, and a bachelor of science degree completion in business.

Presentation already offers a bachelor of science in social work degree completion program at Kilian.

The new programs will be offered this fall, but students can enroll now in their general education classes, many of which are being offered this summer.


  • W. Va. College Proposes Hiking Fall Tuition By 3.5 Percent

FAIRMONT, W.Va. (AP) — Pierpont Community & Technical College in Fairmont is planning to raise tuition by more than 3.5 percent this fall.

Its board of governors approved tuition increases of $60 more per semester for residential students and $146 more for nonresidential students.

The new rates require approval from the Community and Technical College System of West Virginia.

Pierpont is the second college in West Virginia to discuss tuition increases this week.

West Virginia University interim president Peter Magrath told the Faculty Senate that tuition at the Morgantown campus may go up as much as 4 percent this fall.

  • Ala. College To Test 4-Day Week This Summer

HANCEVILLE, Ala. (AP) — Classes will be held and offices will be open Monday through Thursday this summer at Wallace State Community College.

Officials at the Cullman County school announced they will test a four-day work week as a way of addressing rising energy costs and budget reductions caused by the recession.

President Vicki Hawsey estimated the college could save $300,000 to $400,000 by opening four days during the summer.

The state school board voted earlier this year to allow community colleges to pursue alternatives to the standard five-day work week.

  • N. D. College And University Announce New Collaboration

GRAND FORKS, N.D. (AP) — Students attending Lake Region State College for two years will have access to the University of North Dakota, under a plan announced by presidents of both schools.

UND President Robert Kelley and Lake Region State President Mike Bower say the plan will allow full-time Lake Region students to live on the UND campus in Grand Forks and take a limited number of classes.

Students who successfully complete courses for 24 transferrable credits will be considered for admission to UND.

Officials of the two schools say they have sent information to around 400 perspective students.

“This will give students that opportunity to get engaged from a two-year college to the four year university,” Bower said.

Lake Region Vice President Doug Darling said the goal is to offer developmental and general education courses to help students meet UND admissions requirements.

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