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.
February 5, 2020
Jamie Merisotis
After ‘Varsity Blues’ Scandal, Lots of Talk About Overhauling College Admissions. Will There Be Action?
Liz Willen, The Hechinger Report
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Karoline Jimenez will never know exactly why her dream college turned her down. She was a student leader with top grades. Her essay recounted overcoming obstacles: moving to New York City from the Dominican Republic at 12, learning English, navigating bullies in school, and an abusive father at home.

Rejection without explanation has long been an annual rite of passage for high school seniors like Jimenez seeking limited spots at elite four-year colleges. But now, following the Varsity Blues scandal, there are new cries for transparency about the role money, privilege, and connections play in determining who gets in.

Jamie Merisotis
Key Senators Turn Up Heat on OPMs
Lindsay McKenzie, Inside Higher Ed
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Questions about the legality of colleges sharing tuition dollars with companies that help them recruit students are not new, but until recently, lawmakers weren't asking them.

That may be changing. In Jan. 23 letters to the CEOs of five leading online program management companies, Senators Elizabeth Warren and Sherrod Brown questioned the legality of the business practices of 2U, Academic Partnerships, Bisk Education, Pearson Learning, and Wiley Education Services.

Jamie Merisotis
Here’s Why a U. of California Panel Recommends Keeping the ACT and SAT—for Now
Eric Hoover, The Chronicle of Higher Education
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Earlier this week, a panel appointed by the University of California’s Academic Senate delivered a long-awaited report examining the system’s standardized-testing requirements. The bottom-line recommendation: The university, at least for the near future, should continue requiring the ACT and SAT.

The report from the Academic Senate’s executive committee cited university data to show that the standardized tests could help increase the enrollment of disadvantaged students.

Jamie Merisotis
Google, AI, and a Free Up-Skilling Program
Ramona Schindelheim, Work in Progress
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Andrew Dunckelman describes Google as an AI-first company in which everyone needs some command of artificial intelligence. To make certain employees are getting the skills they need to change with their jobs, Google developed what it calls a "Machine Learning Crash Course."

More than 18,000 people inside Google have completed the free course, and now the company is making it available to the world at large, also for free.

On this episode of Work in Progress, Dunckelman talks about Google's efforts to address the skills gap and why businesses, local governments, educators, and employees themselves must step up as well.

Is It Fair to Judge a College by Its ROI?
Bennett Leckrone, The Chronicle of Higher Education
New Report Reveals Financial Barriers for Student Parents in California
Sarah Wood, Diverse Issues in Higher Education
Does This Match? APS Launches Digital Tool to Help With College Advising
Vanessa McCray, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Program Aims to Propel Community College Graduation Rates
Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology
Competency-Led Hiring on the Rise
Rhea Kelly, Campus Technology
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