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2010 April 17 - 12:00 am

NEWS BRIEFS:

  • Higher-ed-related news summaries from around the nation

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Lansing Community College is offering a money-back guarantee to students in four training programs if they fail to land a job within a year.

The “Get a Skill, Get a Job” initiative will train people as call center specialists, quality inspectors, computer numerical control machinists and pharmacy technicians.

Participants will pay half the $2,370 to $2,500 cost upfront and the rest in monthly installments after getting jobs.

Participants will sign a contract agreeing to full attendance and completion of assigned class work. Those who show a good-faith effort to find a job but fail will get a refund after one year.

  • Ky. College Transfer Bill Gets Final OK

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) —The Kentucky General Assembly has passed legislation that would make it easier for community college students to transfer course credits to four-year public universities.

The House gave final approval to the bill on a vote of 100-0.

The bill also encourages four-year universities to limit bachelor’s degrees to 120 hours and associate degrees to 60 hours. That provision is aimed at helping students complete school in four years.

Gov. Steve Beshear said the legislation will help Kentuckians receive college degrees, which, in turn, will make the state more attractive for business growth.

  • Tuition Frozen at W.Va. 2-Yr. Colleges.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Tuition is frozen at West Virginia’s public community and technical colleges for the upcoming academic year.

The West Virginia Council for Community and Technical College Education unanimously approved the freeze. Some fees for the 2010-2011 academic year also are frozen.

Gov. Joe Manchin called for a one-year tuition and fee freeze at public two-year and four-year schools earlier this year. Manchin says accessible college education is critical for West Virginia’s future.

Manchin spokesman Matt Turner says the governor applauds the council’s decision. Turner says the freeze should help displaced workers find employment.

  • Ala. College Drops Miss. Campus Plan

GAUTIER, Miss. (AP) — The University of South Alabama has dropped plans to offer classes in Gautier on the campus of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College.

MGCCC had entered into a contract in March with USA to rent part of a building on the Jackson County campus for three years. However, the schools now say the criticism and questions raise by the decision has prompted them to abandon the project.

The University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg had a location at MGCCC’s Gautier campus until August. USM closed the classroom building, saying it would save about $200,000 annually.

  • Nev. Schools Rank Poorly in Study

LAS VEGAS (AP) — A business group study on student achievement testing puts Nevada well below national averages on standardized proficiency exams given to elementary, middle and college-bound high-school students.

The Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce First in Education report says the most commonly cited national tests are given just to select students in each state, and that no comprehensive, national comparison of student proficiency exists.

The report was done for the chamber by Las Vegas-based Applied Analysis.

It’s the first in what the chamber says will be a series of reports focusing on Nevada’s quality of education, education fiscal policy, and factors affecting educational achievement.

  • Miss., La. Colleges Reach Grad Accord

MONROE, La. (AP) — Graduates of Mississippi’s largest community college can now get a bachelor’s degree in two years from the University of Louisiana at Monroe.

ULM President James Cofer and Hinds Community College President Clyde Muse recently signed the agreement.

It lets students with associate degrees from Hinds transfer into one of 11 programs at ULM. Three are online: criminal justice and general studies with a concentration in either business or social science. The others are biology, chemistry, communication studies, history, mathematics, political science, psychology, and sociology.

  • New Vermont College President Set for Role

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The new president of the Community College of Vermont says she wants to keep higher education affordable for the state’s residents and increase the number of Vermonters who earn degrees.

Joyce Judy was chosen to succeed Tim Donovan, who is now chancellor of the system.

Judy says about 40 percent of Vermont adults now have a minimum of an associate’s degree and she’d like to increase that to 70 percent in the next decade.

The community college serves 12,000 students a year in 12 different sites.

  • Wyo. College Buys Hotel for Dormitory

ROCK SPRINGS, Wyo. (AP) — Western Wyoming Community College trustees have approved buying a local hotel for $4.8 million and turning it into a residence hall.

The Board of Trustees approved the purchase of the Rock Springs Wingate Inn to help ease a housing crunch.

The college’s vice president of administration, Marty Kelsey, said that the building should provide 120 beds for students this fall. It will have residential assistants and a professional resident hall director who will stay at the building.

The Wingate comes with a small kitchen area and a swimming pool, but Kelsey says that due to liability issues, the school plans to drain the pool.

  • Utah Cuts Threaten Student Newspaper

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Salt Lake Community College’s student newspaper may have to fold because of budget cuts.

The state Board of Regents on recently approved the school Student Fee Board’s recommendation to cut The Globe’s funding allocation by half.

The action, which was part of statewide changes to higher education student fees, will mean a total decrease of about $20,000 in funding for the newspaper.

Allison Barlow Hess of Utah’s Society of Professional Journalists criticized the move, saying student journalists need the experience of running a newspaper at the college level.

Comments: editor@ccweek.com

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