Top stories in higher ed for Thursday
Lumina Foundation is committed to increasing the proportion of Americans with high-quality degrees, certificates and other credentials to 60 percent by 2025.
June 7, 2018
At Middlesex Community College, Extra Help for Asian Students
Linda K. Wertheimer, The New York Times
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Southeast Asians, researchers say, are the fastest-growing ethnic or racial group in community colleges and enter college with a number of issues—including poverty and limited English skills.

These students have as high a risk of dropping out of college as low-income Hispanic or African-American students. Yet, colleges and policymakers often don’t realize it because Southeast Asian students’ statistics are lumped in as part of overall Asian student performance. Their problems are hidden partly because of the model minority myth that all Asians are academic superstars and flourish in high school and college.

At the new Asian American Connections Center, located on the Lowell campus of Middlesex Community College, students are finding the support and resources they need to flourish and complete their college credential. 

Decoding the Cost of College
Rachel Fishman, Stephen Burd, Ben Barrett, Kim Dancy, and Sophie Nguyen, New America
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Financial aid award letters often use confusing jargon and terminology, leaving millions of prospective students and families with more questions that answers. 

Poor communication of financial aid options can impact students and parents long-term financial health. Financial decisions based on incomplete and incoherent information place students at risk of facing unanticipated costs. Worse yet, obscuring costs puts students at risk of dropping out if their bill is bigger than anticipated—and dropping out is one of the major predictors of federal student loan default.
At Bates College, New Focus on ‘Purposeful Work’
Kirk Carapezza, WGBH On Campus
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As students graduate this commencement season, many can expect a common question from their families: “What's next?”

To provide an answer, Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, has added new courses to its five-week, short-term semester that follows final exams. The change comes in response to many liberal arts graduates finding themselves underemployed in jobs that don't require a bachelor's degree.

The new curriculum, which focuses on career preparation, is called “Purposeful Work.” Many of the courses are taught by industry practitioners, instead of professors. Bates also fully funds internships that help students regardless of their income bridge college to a career.
How Nontraditional Pathways Can Lead Workers to Good Jobs
John Yang, PBS NewsHour
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Not everyone takes a traditional route to a college degree that will prepare them for the workforce. Nicole Smith of Georgetown University and Beth Cobert of the Markle Foundation offer insight about alternatives to help young adults and returning students find their way to the middle class and help close the skilled worker gap.

Here's Why Corpus Christi Is a Talent Hub
Alexandria Rodriguez, Corpus Christi Caller-Times
Community Colleges and the Middle Class
David Baime, Community College Daily
HSI Increases Reflect Growing Student Enrollment, Matriculation
Tiffany Pennamon, Diverse Issues in Higher Education
Opinion: Remove Barriers to College Degree
Dawn S. Medley, The Detroit News
Opinion: Invest in a Community College Degree, Not Just Access
Ryan J. Smith, San Francisco Chronicle (California)
Bootcamps Go to College
Matthew Rascoff, The EvoLLLution
Blog: To Pundits Who Proclaim That College Isn’t Worth It
Matt Reed, Confessions of a Community College Dean
Manufacturing Talent: The Future of Apprenticeships
Collin Gutman and Eric Seleznow, RealClearEducation
Lawmakers to Introduce Free College Bill
Debra Erdley, The Tribune-Review (Pennsylvania)
A Stop-Gap Solution
AACC 21st Century Center (Maryland)
What Can Research Tell Us About Steep Cuts for Public Colleges?
Eric Kelderman, The Chronicle of Higher Education
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