Top stories in higher ed for Monday
Lumina Foundation is committed to increasing the proportion of Americans with high-quality degrees, certificates and other credentials to 60 percent by 2025.
July 8, 2019
Brewing Battle Over Pell Grants
Andrew Kreighbaum, Inside Higher Ed
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Democratic presidential candidates are spending another election cycle debating the merits of free college. But in Washington, a fight is brewing over whether federal student aid should be available to people who pursue short-term training to land better jobs.

Bipartisan legislation backed by community college and business groups would make certificate programs, even non-credit-bearing courses, as short as eight weeks eligible for Pell Grants.

Supporters of the bill, dubbed the JOBS Act, say it would make an overdue change to better tailor the design of the federal aid system to the demands of adult students. It would also exclude for-profit institutions, which have been some of the biggest targets of criticism aimed at the short-term credential sector.

Jamie Merisotis
Second Chances for Applicants Shut Out of Crowded CSU Campuses
Larry Gordon, EdSource
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This is the season for second chances at the 23-campus California State University system.

A new CSU program offers freshmen and transfers a spot at nine campuses with room if they were rejected where they first applied.

Some 5,000 students so far are taking advantage of the new opportunities at the campuses involved in the safety net. That is only 18 percent of those who were offered the opportunity. Many students have ignored it. Some reluctantly enrolled at places they never considered before. Others are eagerly embracing the acceptance as a life raft for higher education.

Jamie Merisotis
Atlanta's HBCUs Get $8.25M From UnitedHealth for Data Science Training
James Paterson, Education Dive
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An Atlanta-based consortium of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) will receive $8.25 million over five years from UnitedHealth Group to expand the teaching of data science.

The funds for the Atlanta University Center Consortium will enable four institutions—Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College, Morehouse School of Medicine, and Spelman College—to offer students technical classes and specialized training, pay for faculty development, and provide internships at UnitedHealth companies.

For UnitedHealth, the program represents an opportunity to expand a pipeline of prospective future employees in a tech sector that is intensely competitive.

Providing Prisoners With Expanded Access to Higher Education Is the Smart Thing to Do
Ted Mitchell, The Hill
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It’s hard to find bipartisan agreement on almost any issue in Washington, but that’s exactly what’s happening with a small, relatively unknown federal program called Second Chance Pell.

The program allows prisoners who are pursuing postsecondary education at a limited number of colleges to have access to Pell Grants, the primary form of federal financial aid for low-income students.

The expansion of the Second Chance Pell program is one of those success stories that deserves more attention. Working together, colleges and universities can and should partner with their states and the federal government, and work to expand access to quality postsecondary education for incarcerated individuals.

New Series Will Focus on Developing NH's Workforce
Mike Cote, New Hampshire Union Leader  
Walmart's Workforce of the Future
Julia Hanna, Harvard Business School Working Knowledge
Alaska Faces Budget Fight Over State University Cuts
Ethan Millman, The Wall Street Journal
Blog: Texas to Require FAFSA for High School Completion
Bill DeBaun, National College Access Network
New York’s Foster Youth Want Connection to Jobs, Survey Shows
Ericka Francois, The Chronicle of Social Change
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