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2009 November 16 - 12:00 am

NEWS BRIEFS:

  • Maricopa Board President Gets Jail Term for DUI

PHOENIX (AP) — The president of the Maricopa Community Colleges’ governing board has pleaded guilty to drunken driving and will serve 30 days in jail.

Authorities say Colleen Clark pleaded guilty on in Scottsdale City Court to one misdemeanor count of extreme DUI.

The 26-year-old Clark was arrested July 11 in Scottsdale for driving under the influence. Her charges were amended to include extreme and super-extreme DUI after a blood test revealed Clark had a 0.204 blood alcohol level — well above Arizona’s legal limit of 0.08 percent.

Clark’s sentence will start Dec. 12 and will include work release.

Clark became president of the five-member community college board in January. Her term ends in December.

  • Panel Nixes Planned Md. Doctoral Program

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — State education officials have ruled that the University of Maryland University College will not be allowed to offer students in Maryland a doctoral program for community college administration.

The Maryland Higher Education Commission ruled on UMUC’s appeal of an earlier decision by Education Secretary James Lyons.

Morgan State University had objected to the new program at the predominantly online institution. Morgan argued it would duplicate efforts at the historically black college in Baltimore, violating civil rights precedents.

Officials had already said UMUC would be allowed to offer the program to students outside Maryland. The commission promised that an online program will be offered by 2011 and Morgan will get the first crack at filling that role.

  • Settlement Allows PRCC To Rebuild Facilities

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — Pearl River Community College is moving forward on rebuilding facilities damaged by Hurricane Katrina after four years of “moving in quicksand.”

Officials settled with Zurich Insurance Co. in August over extensive storm damage incurred on its Poplarville campus and received payment six weeks ago.

For four years, the two sides had haggled over how much the school was owed. Zurich originally offered $15 million to PRCC, a figure far short of the school’s $40 million to $50 million in estimated damages.

President William Lewis said he was pleased with the settlement amount, which he could not disclose because of a confidentiality agreement.

  • Nebraska College To Sue Others in State Aid Dispute

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The board of Metropolitan Community College has voted to sue Nebraska’s five other community colleges in an effort to collect millions in state aid dollars.

Metro lawyer Bob Canella says the lawsuit will be filed in Lancaster County.

The move is the latest in what has been an increasingly contentious relationship between Omaha-based Metro and the other colleges over decades.

Early this year, Metro was kicked out of the state’s community college association for not paying its full dues for the year. Metro officials have said some of the dues were withheld to protest what they believed was unfair treatment by other colleges in the association.

Metro officials say the lawsuit is the only way to recover about $9 million in state aid they say Metro is owed.

  • Ky. Open Records Ruling Goes Against Colleges

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — The state attorney general’s office says officials at the Kentucky Community and Technical College System improperly withheld documents that could be related to the removal of Owensboro Community and Technical College President Paula Gastenveld.

The Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer reports it was seeking documents including evaluations of two of the college’s vice presidents. It’s the second related open records decision against KCTCS in recent months.

KCTCS President Mike McCall transferred Gastenveld to the central office in Versailles in May. Gastenveld has filed a lawsuit against 10 people, including McCall.

KCTCS has claimed the records should be exempt from disclosure and were not considered final action.

  • Hawaii Benefits From Presence of Foreign Students

HONOLULU (AP) — International students and their dependents spent $160 million in Hawaii during the last academic year.

That’s according to a study released by the state and the Hawaii-Pacific division of NAFSA: Association of International Educators.

The state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism says the financial estimate is based on surveys of Hawaii schools authorized by the Department of Homeland Security to enroll non-immigrant students.

The institutions include universities and colleges, as well as vocational, language, technical and high schools.

According to the survey the top five places of origin for the more than 13,000 international students were Japan, South Korea, Switzerland, Taiwan and China.

  • Enrollment at Ga. Colleges Zooms Past 100,000

ATLANTA (AP) — Enrollment has skyrocketed at Georgia’s technical colleges since last year, hitting an all-time record.

The number of students in the Technical College System of Georgia is up 24 percent since last fall, hitting 110,254. It shattered the previous record of 91,838, which was set in 2003.

Administrators say the downturn in the economy sent many students back to school to get training in other fields. The largest growth included campuses in Valdosta, Atlanta and Albany. Georgia has 28 technical colleges spread throughout the state.

  • Alaska Gets First Director of Rural Education

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Alaska has its first director of rural education.

Juneau School Board Member Phyllis Carlson has been selected for the position.

Gov. Sean Parnell made the announcement at the Alaska Federation of Natives Convention in Anchorage.

Carlson served as director of the Vocational Training and Resource Center of the Central Council Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska. She has also managed the Central Council’s Johnson O’Malley Native Education Program.

Carlson says she’s excited that the administration has decided to focus on rural education.

  • Tenn. College Posts Alert After ID Theft

HARRIMAN, Tenn. (AP) — Roane State Community College has posted an “ID alert” on its Web site after the theft of a storage device containing confidential information on more than 10,000 people.

The Knoxville News Sentinel reported officials of the college in Harriman said the device was stolen Oct. 12 in Knoxville from the car of a Roane State employee. It contains the names and Social Security numbers of current or former students and employees.

The college has also sent letters to people who might be affected by the theft.

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