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2012 January 9 - 12:00 am

NEWS BRIEFS:

  • Salmon Raised At Wash. College Donated To Hungry

BELLINGHAM, Wash. (AP) — Weighing in at 1,300 pounds, 650 salmons raised by students at a Bellingham college are going to feed the hungry.

The Bellingham Herald reports that the salmon bounty is being donated by the Bellingham Technical College to the Bellingham Food Bank as part of a long standing partnership.

The students raised the chum salmon at the college’s fisheries technology program. Hatchery manager and instructor Earl Steele says it feels good to know that the fish are going to people in need.

Food bank Executive Director Mike Cohen says the donation couldn’t have come at a better time. The bank broke its record, set in 2009, of people served. The bank had 102,000 clients in 2009.

The donation is also coordinated through Bornstein Seafoods and SeaShare, a national nonprofit that facilitates donations from the seafood industry to food banks.

  • Iowa Man Guilty of Fraud in Student Loan Scheme

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — A Waterloo man has pleaded guilty in federal court to defrauding the U.S. Department of Education for at least $62,000 in financial aid.

Thirty-one-year-old Ron Turner III was convicted on a single count of financial aid fraud in Cedar Rapids.

Authorities acknowledged in a plea agreement that he participated in a scheme to fraudulently obtain federal student loan funds from Jan. 2006-July 2007.

Turner and others registered for classes at Kirkwood Community College and applied for student aid. They then used the funds for non-educational purposes.

Turner, who remains free on bond, faces a possible maximum sentence of 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

  • Idaho Counties Subsidizing College Tuition

TWIN FALLS, Idaho (AP) — Enrollment data at the College of Southern Idaho shows that about half of the students are getting subsidies to help pay tuition and fees from counties stretched across the southern half of the state.

Enrollment at the Twin Falls-based CSI is about 8,000 students, but about half of those students live outside of Twin Falls and Jerome counties. Those counties comprise CSI’s taxing district and kick in property tax dollars to support operations.

But the Times-News reports that counties outside of those in the taxing district pay $50 per credit for each student attending a community college. That rate is capped at $500 per semester and a total of $3,000 per student.

Officials from counties like Gooding and Minidoka say the number of students getting support has been steady.

  • Flags Returned To Ill. College After 35 Years

JOLIET, Ill. (AP) — Stolen flags have made their way back to a suburban Chicago college campus after more than three decades.

In 1976, Brian Carney and some prankster friends decided to sneak onto the Joliet Junior College campus and steal the American and bicentennial flags. They said they’d wanted to commemorate the nation’s bicentennial.

Over the years the men would pass the flags between themselves every so often. They were never caught.

But Carney, who now lives in Texas, says it had started to bother him.

The Southtown Star reports that earlier this week he went to the campus and publicly surrendered the flags.

Campus police say the statute of limitations of misdemeanor theft has long passed and no charges will be filed. College officials say the flags will displayed.

  • Auditors Fault Accounting at SC College

COLUMBIA, Tenn. (AP) — State auditors have found that millions of dollars was misreported during accounting procedures at Columbia State Community College.

Auditors said that between July 1, 2008, and June 30, 2010, funds were misreported or left unreported on financial documents.

There was no indication money was stolen.

According to The Daily Herald, the college blamed some of the errors on lack of understanding and confusion.

The audit report said the errors were apparently corrected. State officials recommended that the college improve its financial preparation and review procedures to prevent future errors.

  • Appeals Court Overturns Ala. Ethics Ruling

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The state Court of Criminal Appeals has overturned a lower court that decided Alabama’s ethics law was unconstitutionally vague.

A Mobile County judge earlier this year threw out an ethics charge against former Bishop State Community College women’s basketball coach Elston Turner, ruling the law is too broad. Turner was among more than two dozen people arrested in 2007 during a probe of financial aid at the school.

A lower court sided with Turner’s defense in ruling against the law. Turner claims it’s invalid because it doesn’t require an intent to commit a crime.

But the appeals court sent the case against back to Mobile, reversing the earlier decision.

The judges say the law is not specific enough, and that Turner was accused of intentionally violating it.

  • Former College Exec Pleads To Taking $800,000

POMONA, Calif. (AP) — A former Mt. San Antonio College official has pleaded no contest to stealing about $800,000 from students and the Los Angeles County school.

The San Gabriel Valley Tribune says Jerry Austin entered pleas to 16 felony charges, including identity theft, forgery and grand theft.

The 57-year-old Norco man faces two to five years in prison. A February hearing is scheduled to determine how much money he will have to pay back to the school and students.

Austin directed the fire technology program at the Walnut community college before he was fired in August.

Prosecutors say that beginning in 2005, he overcharged students for training and equipment and embezzled $150,000 from the school.

The money went into a phony school account he administered.

  • Miss. College Adds Marketing Program Options

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — Students planning to pursue an associate in applied science degree in business marketing and management technology at Pearl River Community College will have several class options available to them in the spring semester.

The Hattiesburg American reports one option will be the addition of two business marketing day classes on Tuesday and Thursday that will be taught at the Lowery Woodall Advanced Technology Center in Hattiesburg. They include personal selling and entrepreneurship.

These classes are in addition to the new online degree program that began this fall in the Business Marketing and Management Technology department.

  • UNH Economist Named New State Chancellor

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — A University of New Hampshire economist has been named chancellor of the Community College System of New Hampshire.

Ross Gittell, a professor at UNH’s Whittemore School of Business of Economics, will take over as chancellor in February.

He was chosen by the community college system Board of Trustees, which said Gittell will bring key skills and expertise to the job at a time when the system is working to meet the state’s shifting economic and workforce needs.

He succeeds Bonnie Newman, who has served as interim chancellor since August. The previous chancellor, Richard Gustafson, retired.

  • Maine Program Focuses on Hospitality Fields

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Eastern Maine Community College is kicking off a new program to give students the skills to fill jobs — including poker and black jack dealers — in Maine’s hospitality industry.

The program is called the Maine Hospitality Institute and will train students in specific hospitality fields.

As part of the initiative, Hollywood Slots is partnering with the college on a program that would provide training for jobs such as black jack and poker dealers, pit bosses and other positions related to the addition of table games to Hollywood Slots.

Hollywood Slots is adding 14 poker, black jack and other table games this spring following November’s countywide referendum that gave approval to table games.

  • W.Va. College Launches Gas Drilling Course

NEW MARTINSVILLE, W.Va. (AP) — A West Virginia community college is doing its part to ensure state residents share in the natural gas boom.

The Intelligencer/Wheeling News-Register reports that West Virginia Northern Community College is offering lessons in the skills necessary to find work on a drilling rig.

Twenty students at the college’s New Martinsville campus are the first to take advantage of the education.

The class is the first of what school officials believe will be several they will offer as the drilling gold rush continues throughout the Upper Ohio Valley.

Those who complete the course receive an International Association of Drilling Contractors rig pass that allows them to gain entry level employment at a drilling site.

  • SC Technical College Expands Culinary Program

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (AP) — Horry-Georgetown Technical College is doubling the size of its culinary arts program in the next three years to serve the needs of hundreds of restaurants on South Carolina’s Grand Strand.

The Sun News of Myrtle Beach reports the number of culinary students will double to 300.

The college is building a new two-story building on its Grand Strand campus to house classrooms, kitchens, a bakery and two restaurants.

Executive Vice President for Continuing Education Tom Maeser says food service has become a major industry in Myrtle Beach, with more than 1,500 restaurants located along the Grand Strand.

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