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2018 May 24 - 04:20 pm

News Briefs

A Summary Listing of Higher-Ed-Related News from Around The Nation

Tech Giants Partner with Cuyahoga for Training

CLEVELAND (AP) — Apple, IBM and Microsoft are partnering with a Clevelandarea community college to create better training for information technology jobs.

The tech giants are partnering with Cuyahoga Community College with the aim of filling a need for middle-skill jobs — positions that require more than a high school diploma but less than a bachelor’s degree.

Cleveland.com reports each company will bring different resources to the partnership, with IBM helping to create an online and in-person learning program, and Apple giving faculty and students access to its development data.

Microsoft will provide $10,000 in grant money to assist companies in hiring graduates of the “Cleveland Codes” program.

Cuyahoga Community College has long had a partnership with Cisco Systems Inc., which offers certification programs.


Tesla Starts College Courses To Train Mechanics

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Electric car maker Tesla Inc. is fostering community college training programs for what could be new blue-collar jobs as mechanics for the growing number of battery-powered vehicles.

A first group of Tesla technicians is set to graduate from a 12-week training program at Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte. The company said a second group is nearing the end of classes at Rio Hondo College in Whittier, California.

Courses focus on skills specific to electric vehicles such as battery architecture and charging technology, and particularly servicing Tesla vehicles. A spokeswoman didn’t respond Monday when asked how much of the costs of creating and delivering the courses are paid by the Palo Alto, California-based company.

Tesla produces or plans to make passenger cars, a pickup truck and semi- trucks.


New Degrees In Ohio Address In-Demand Jobs

CINCINNATI (AP) — An Ohio college will be offering new degrees designed to fill in-demand jobs in the region.

Cincinnati State Technical and Community College says it’s creating four-year bachelor’s degree programs in land surveying and in culinary and food science. The Cincinnati Enquirer reports both programs were approved by the state Department of Higher Education. Classes in those programs could be offered as early as this fall.

The programs address regional workforce needs. Jobs in those fields are in high demand but aren’t being filled.

A Cincinnati State spokesman says graduates could immediately make between $45,000 and $70,000 annually and in some cases even more. He noted that surveying jobs typically pay higher salaries than culinary jobs.


Mich. College OKs High-Tech Security System

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Grand Rapids Community College trustees have approved purchasing a new security system that officials say would let it start a lockdown with the press of a button.

School officials tell The Grand Rapids Press that in addition to the security lockdown feature the new system would let staff know if a door is open or unlocked. The school has about 400 exterior doors. Community college president Bill Pink says the school wants “to be able to do all we can to make it as safe as possible on our campuses.” The school has about 14,280 students.

Campus Police Chief Rebecca Whitman says locking down buildings will make the campus safer from internal and external threats. She says it also will prevent officers from being put at risk.


Nursing Program Takes Steps To Avert Probation

BULLHEAD CITY, Ariz.

(AP) — Officials from a Kingman community college say they are already making changes to their nursing program which is in danger of being placed on probation.

The Mohave Valley Daily News reports Mohave Community College’s Chief Academic Officer Stephen Eaton said that the Arizona State Board of Nursing and Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing found issues with the program during their visit last month.

College President Michael Kearns says the state’s concerns stem from low pass rates on state licensure exams based 2-year-old data.

He says the rates have since jumped from the 70s to 97 percent.

Eaton says they are expecting “recommendations for improvement” in the commission’s report coming in August.

Eaton says the college will have two years to address the issues before facing consequences.


Details Emerge in Harassment Case Against Ex-President

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Newly-filed court records reveal details of sexual harassment allegations against the former acting president of Spokane Falls Community College.

The Spokesman-Review reported that documents show Darren Pitcher is accused of exposing himself to a co-worker and coercing subordinates to have sex with him.

Court records state that “those subordinates either gained promotion as a result of the sexual relationship or were fired or demoted if his sexual advances were rebuffed.”

Pitcher resigned in February amid a human resources investigation.

The allegations are described in court documents filed by attorney Nicholas Kovarik, who is seeking to prevent the names of victims and witnesses from being disclosed in public records.

The Spokesman-Review and many other news organizations generally do not identify victims of alleged sexual harassment or sexual assault without their permission.


Baltimore County Launches Free Tuition Program

ROSSVILLE, Md. (AP) — A new need-based scholarship program that would provide free community college tuition for eligible high school graduates in a Maryland county has been announced.

Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz said in a statement that his budget proposal includes a request for the Baltimore County College Promise program. It would cover tuition and mandatory fees at Community College of Baltimore County for county residents to finish an associate degree or workplace and certification program, up to a maximum of three years.

Students must have an adjusted household income of $69,000 or less and a GPA of 2.5 or better.

Money for the scholarship would come from the budget that will be presented to the county council for approval in April. If approved, it would begin with the Fall 2018 semester.


Former WyoTech president announces purchase proposal

LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — A buyer has stepped forward with a proposal to purchase the WyoTech technical school in southeast Wyoming.

Jim Mathis is a former WyoTech student, instructor and president.

Mathis says he drafted a proposal to acquire the WyoTech Laramie campus and presented it to the Education Credit Management Corp., which owns WyoTech.

He tells the Laramie Boomerang that he wants to help the community and WyoTech, which is slated to close in June.

He did not reveal the details of his proposal but says with the help of another investor he has raised the initial funding for the proposal and create a five-year plan for WyoTech’s future.

Laramie County Community College in Cheyenne has also presented a proposal for absorbing WyoTech into its curriculum.


Tenn. Regents Name 2 College Presidents

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee’s Board of Regents has named the next presidents at Nashville State Community College and Motlow State Community College.

The board said that Michael L. Torrence will take office as president of Motlow State on May 1.

Shanna Jackson will begin leadership of Nashville State on June 1.

Chancellor Flora W. Tydings recommended Jackson and Torrence from among four finalists for each presidency selected by search committees appointed by the board.

Torrence is currently assistant vice president of academic affairs at Volunteer State Community College in Gallatin.

Jackson is an associate vice president and chief operating officer of Columbia State Community College’s Williamson Campus in Franklin.


Head of technical college in Tacoma fired

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — The president of a state-run technical college in Tacoma has been fired following an investigation into his conduct with college employees.

The News Tribune reports that the board of Bates Technical College unanimously voted fire President Ron Langrell for “convenience,” which means he’ll qualify for severance pay according to his contract.

Langrell’s attorney, Michael McAleenan, said his client is disappointed and finds it unfortunate that “a poorly conducted investigation, without adequate due process or basis, results in his forced ouster.” The lawyer says Langrell will review his options.

Langrell was placed on paid leave in late January. The board investigated after a female employee filed a harassment complaint in November.

Public records obtained by The News Tribune showed that an investigation found Langrell gave unwanted hugs, made inappropriate comments and intimidated and demeaned employees.

The decision to fire Langrell was a departure from last month when the board decided Langrell’s return would be contingent upon him following a “disciplinary directive.”


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