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2015 July 8 - 04:11 pm

News Briefs

A summary listing of higher-ed-related news from around the nation


Nev. Forges Partnership with Western Governors University

CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) — The signature if Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval has created a partnership between the state and a nonprofit, low-cost online university designed to ease access to two and four-year college degrees.

Sandoval signed a proclamation creating a Nevada branch of the Western Governors University.

The online school is a nonprofit and offers degrees in business, teaching and information technology. It’s based on “competency learning,” meaning students don’t have assigned class times and instead can work at their own pace and time.

The partnership will be funded through a $2 million grant from a separate education-focused nonprofit called USA Funds, and through tuition payments from students.

Nevada will join five other states including Texas, Indiana and Washington in creating the state-affiliated schools.

W. Virginia Colleges Name Tucker as Interim Chancellor

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Sarah Tucker has been named interim chancellor of West Virginia’s community and technical colleges.

The West Virginia Council for Community and Technical College Education announced the appointment. She has been serving as vice chancellor of the West Virginia Community and Technical System.

Tucker previously worked for the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission as the director of planning and research.

She assumed her new duties July 1, succeeding Chancellor James L. Skidmore.

Central Piedmont Gets $200K Grant For Vets

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan, along with Fox SportsSouth, donated $200,000 to Central Piedmont Community College’s veterans employment fund.

Jordan made the announcement during the team’s annual “Swarm to Serve” day of service. The grant is earmarked for paid internships for military veterans.

The 52-year-old Jordan, sporting a pair of reading glasses, told the crowd of several hundred ``we take great pride in being able to give back’’ and ``we want to show we’re committed.’’ Following the event, Hornets, SportsSouth and Bank of America employees participated in various volunteer projects around Charlotte benefiting military personnel.

Jordan says military support joins the Charlotte Hornets Foundation’s three current pillars of education, hunger and wellness. The foundation has donated nearly $1.2 million since Jordan took over as the franchise’s majority owner in 2010.

Energy Company Donates $500K For Scholarships

WHEELING, W.Va. (AP) — Southwestern Energy Co. is donating $500,000 combined to fund petroleum technology scholarships at Pierpont Community and Technical College and West Virginia Northern Community College.

Bill Way, president and chief operating officer of Southwestern Energy, joined Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin at the Wheeling Rotary Club for the announcement.

Way said Southwestern Energy has hired more than 100 West Virginians since late December.

In October 2014, Southwestern Energy announced it would spend more than $5 billion to acquire Chesapeake Energy’s Marcellus and Utica shale properties in West Virginia and southwestern Pennsylvania.

The company then announced plans to invest an additional $20 billion and hire hundreds of West Virginia workers.

Pudding Causes Hazmat Scare at Wash. College

LAKEWOOD, Wash. (AP) — Hazardous material scares aren’t unusual these days but the one that briefly shut down a campus building at a college near Tacoma, Washington, involved — pudding.

The News Tribune reports (http://is.gd/IUBlyQ ) that an envelope with powder and an unusual message was found at Clover Park Technical College in Lakewood. The item was left on a student’s vehicle.

West Pierce Fire & Rescue spokeswoman Jenny Weekes says the message said something like, “Thank you for your service.”

Multiple agencies sent emergency crews. They shut down one building because a campus security worker had taken the envelope inside.

The powder turned out to be instant pudding mix.

Said Weekes: “I believe it was chocolate.”

Former Dean Sentenced for Fatal Crash

MINEOLA, N.Y. (AP) — A former Long Island college dean is heading to prison for taking meth before his pickup truck slammed into a disabled car and killed two men.

Robert Beodeker was sentenced to four to 12 years in prison.

The 52-year-old pleaded guilty in April to aggravated vehicular homicide and driving under the influence of drugs.

Police say 76-year-old John Elder and 65-year-old Edward Ross were tending to a disabled car when Beodeker’s GMC pickup truck struck and killed them in 2013.

Beodeker apologized in court and says he takes full responsibility for the crash.

The victims’ families say Beodeker’s sentence wasn’t fair and was too light.

Beodeker was an associate dean at Suffolk County Community College. He was suspended after the crash and resigned last year.

Miss. Schools Launch Dual Enrollment Plan

BELDEN, Miss. (AP) — Lee County School District students in vocational and technical classes this fall can also earn college credits from Itawamba Community College.

The program takes effect this fall. Michelle Sumerel, dean of e-learning at Itawamba, said it is a pilot program the community college hopes to eventually expand to other schools.

“The goal is for them to earn high school and college credits, to help them choose a career path and also to give them the opportunity to be ready for that career,” Sumerel told the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal (http://bit.ly/1IO32jv ).

The students will attend classes at Itawamba’s Belden campus. They can enroll in one of five clusters and will earn both high school and college credit for each course they complete.

Lee County Superintendent Jimmy Weeks said available courses will be law enforcement, marketing, advanced manufacturing, welding and health sciences. Students can complete four courses in any one cluster, possibly earning as many as 12 community college hours.

Each cluster also will offer an opportunity to earn a national certification that will help students in eventually landing a job, Sumerel said.

Second College Affiliates with Rowan University

MOUNT LAUREL, N.J. (AP) — A second New Jersey community college has changed its name as part of a new partnership with Rowan University.

Under the deal, the former Burlington County College is now Rowan College at Burlington County. The trustees of both schools approved the deal.

The former Gloucester County College had already made similar change to create a formal bond with the fast-growing state institution.

Under the deal, students at the community college who complete their associate degrees and certain requirements will be accepted automatically to Rowan.

Glassboro-based Rowan University will also offer some classes at the Mount Laurel campus of the community college.

Governance of the schools will remain separate.

Wash. Colleges Move Toward Partnership

BELLEVUE, Wash. (AP) — Washington State University and Bellevue College have taken another step toward a potential future education partnership.

Under the proposed partnership, Bellevue College will keep offering community college classes in Seattle’s eastern suburbs, while adding four-year degree options under the WSU name.

The schools say the partnership would be unique because of the way the two schools would collaborate. Students would be able to complete four year degrees in Bellevue or transfer seamlessly to another WSU campus.

Bellevue College announced that it has signed a memorandum of understanding with WSU that allows them to move forward in their partnership discussions.

As outlined in the memorandum, and if the two institutions can reach consensus, Bellevue College would become Washington State University- Bellevue College.

With an annual average enrollment of over 34,000, Bellevue College is one of the largest educational institutions in Washington State.

Fire Institute Awarded Grant For $435,000

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The federal government is giving nearly $435,000 to the Maine Fire Service Institute to purchase a live-fire training trailer.

The institute is based out of Southern Maine Community College and will receive $434,783 through the federal Assistant to Firefighters Grant Program. Fire service institute deputy director Jim Graves says the trailer is a portable burn building that simulates fire scenarios. The institute will use it to host regional trainings around the state.

U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree says the trailer will help the institute “transport this critical piece of equipment to firefighters in far corners of Maine who might not be able to access a training facility.”

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