Top stories in higher ed for Wednesday
Lumina Foundation is committed to increasing the proportion of Americans with high-quality degrees, certificates and other credentials to 60 percent by 2025.
April 24, 2019
Jamie Merisotis
Building Opportunities for Struggling Residents
Jim Danko, AACC 21st Century Center
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Shirley Burgos was unemployed and living in a shelter in Holyoke, Massachusetts, with her daughter when she discovered an opportunity that would transform her life.

Burgos took advantage of a training program created by a partnership between Springfield Technical Community College (STCC) and the New England Farm Workers' Council (NEFWC). Thanks to the effort, students like Burgos are able to carve out a better future while they learn the necessary skills to secure jobs as mechanical and electrical assemblers. 

We Must Embrace Equity Over Elitism in Higher Education
Kim A. Wilcox, EdSource
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The “Varsity Blues” college admissions cheating scandal reflects a national obsession with image over substance in higher education. The young people caught up in the scandal may have had other options for continuing their schooling—but not at the institutions their parents perceived to be prestigious.

How did we come to this situation? Kim A. Wilcox, chancellor at the University of California, Riverside, writes in this essay that the answer lies in part to a reliance on a set of outdated measures of collegiate quality-measures that focus on institutional wealth and student rejection rates as indicators of educational excellence. 
Nine Universities Partner to Craft Standards for Digital Records
Natalie Schwartz, Education Dive
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Nine universities from around the world announced yesterday the creation of a partnership to explore how emerging technologies like blockchain can help them give students a digital version of their academic records, including badges, certifications, internships, and traditional degrees.

The U.S. institutions involved in the project are Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and the University of California System's Berkeley and Irvine campuses.
Jamie Merisotis
Elizabeth Warren Wants College to Be Free
Adam Harris, The Atlantic
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Student debt is a crisis, for students and for graduates living with debt. There’s near-universal bipartisan agreement that reform is desperately needed, but almost as much disagreement about what, exactly, to do about it.

On Monday, Democratic presidential hopeful Senator Elizabeth Warren released a comprehensive college-affordability plan that she believes could fix a fundamentally flawed system of paying for college. To pay for the plan, which includes the cancellation of student debt, universal free public college, and greater support for minority and low-income students, Warren is calling for an "ultra-millionaire tax."

What’s Really Behind Employers’ Interest in Education?
Goldie Blumenstyk, The Chronicle of Higher Education
How Colleges Can Help Their Students Out-Compete Robots
Caroline Preston, The Hechinger Report
FCC Key to Closing the Homework Gap
Lindsay McKenzie, Inside Higher Ed
Commentary: Supporting and Connecting e-Learners
Carlos Morales, Community College Daily
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