Trump executive order directs feds to prioritize skills over college degrees in hiring

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President Trump is reportedly preparing to redirect employers on how they should hire, prioritizing an applicant’s skills over a university degree.

Fox News has learned that the president will likely sign an executive order Friday, instructing the nation’s largest employer, the federal government, to take a new direction in its hiring tactics.

The order is expected to occur during a board meeting that advises the administration on worker policies.

Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter, adviser and co-chair of the American Workforce Policy Advisory Board, has recommended the federal government — which employs more than 2 million civilian workers — re-strategize who they hire.

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Is an MBA worth it ? After Covid-19, absolutely not.

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For my parents’ generation, the default option for career development was getting an MBA. At one point in the late 2010s, I considered the degree, too. But as much as the brand glittered, a price tag of $200,000 plus two years of lost wages just didn’t seem worth it. And now?

Is an MBA worth it in 2020? It’s becoming more and more clear that an MBA degree is not just a questionable investment—it’s a risk that’s simply not worth it.

Let’s step back: The value of business school has been diminishing for a while. (Just ask Elon Musk, Sheryl Sandberg, or Mark Cuban for their opinion of the MBA or take a look at the declining application rates, even at the top schools.) The model of taking students out of the workforce to study decades-old cases was designed for a different era, when technology didn’t shift entire industries at such a breakneck speed.

Covid-19 has shone a glaring spotlight on just how archaic this type of education is. Almost overnight, business plans have been torn up, the rules we’ve played by scrapped. Executives can’t lean on the tactics they learned from outdated case studies—all of us are learning about our new world in real time.

Continue reading… “Is an MBA worth it ? After Covid-19, absolutely not.”

More than 60 colleges hit with lawsuits as students demand tuition refunds

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Georgetown University, whose nearly empty campus in Washington, DC, is seen here on May 7, 2020—is one of more than 60 schools being sued by students, who are demanding a partial tuition refund after classes moved online due to the coronavirus outbreak.

 At least 60 colleges and universities across the country, and perhaps as many as 100 or more, are now being sued by students who believe they were short-changed when their in-person college experience was replaced by an online one as schools shut down campuses this spring due to the coronavirus pandemic. The students are demanding a refund on tuition and fees equal to the difference between what they paid for in advance and the instruction and educational services they actually received.

The unprecedented number of class action lawsuits began as a trickle in April, picked up momentum in May, and have continued to expand throughout June, with experts saying there are likely many more to come.

The schools currently facing student lawsuits include elite universities like Brown, Columbia, Duke, Emory and Georgetown as well as major public university systems like Rutgers in New Jersey and the University of North Carolina.

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Almost half of Universities may be gone in 5 to 10 years, professor admits

 

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Scott Galloway, lecturer in Marketing at New York University, speaking at the DLD (Digital-Life-Design) conference in Munich, Germany, 18 January 2016.

An NYU professor of business surmises that because of the effects of the coronavirus, anywhere from one-quarter to almost one-half of universities in the nation may go out of business in the next five to ten years. NYU professor Scott Galloway also admitted that foreign students paying full tuition are the “cash cow” for universities and “might decide not to show up.” He commented, “What department stores were to retail, tier-two higher tuition universities are about to become to education and that is they are soon going to become the walking dead.”

Speaking with Hari Sreenivasanon on PBS’ “Amanpour and Co.,” Galloway spoke of the impact of the coronavirus on colleges and universities, forcing them to hold their classes over the internet, and how that may catalyze flight from the universities and the universities’ subsequent downfall. Galloway stated, “Students I think across America along with their families listening in on these Zoom classes are all beginning to wonder what kind of value, or lack thereof, they’re getting for their tuition dollars … There’s generally a recognition or disappointment across America, and I would argue that it’s not that they’re disappointed in the Zoom classes, it’s more the recognition that Zoom has uncovered how disappointing college education is. I think there’s a lot of households saying, ‘This is what we’re paying for?’”

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Community colleges could see a surge in popularity amid Covid-19

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Historically, community college enrollment spikes during economic downturns.

This year, a public health crisis may draw even more students who don’t want to travel or live in a dorm.

The coronavirus crisis has already changed the way this year’s crop of high school seniors are thinking about higher education.

And community colleges across the country are preparing accordingly.

“Under the circumstances, families may turn to us as the gateway of opportunity, and we’ve been ready,” said Michael Baston, the president of Rockland Community College in Rockland County, New York.

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Exam anxiety : How remote test-proctoring is creeping students out

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As schools go remote, so do tests and so does surveillance

The stranger on the Zoom call appeared to be sitting in a tent. He wore a black headset and a blue lanyard around his neck. Behind him was white plastic peppered with pictures of a padlock.

“Hi,” the stranger intoned. “My name is Sharath and I will be your proctor today. Please confirm your name is Jackson and that you’re about to take your 11:30PM exam.”

“Correct,” said Jackson Hayes, from his cinder-block dorm room at the University of Arizona.

When he’d signed up for an online class in Russian cinema history, he’d had no idea it meant being surveilled over video chat by someone on the other side of the world. Hayes learned about it via an item on the class syllabus, released shortly before the semester began, that read “Examity Directions.” The syllabus instructed Hayes and his classmates to sign up for Examity, an online test-proctoring service.

To create his account, Hayes was required to upload a picture of his photo ID to Examity’s website and provide his full name, email, and phone number — pretty banal stuff. But it got weirder. At the end, he typed his name again; Examity would store a biometric template of his keystrokes.

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Universities are expecting 230,000 fewer students – that’s serious financial pain

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Without government support, universities will struggle to provide the education people will need to rebuild their lives after Covid-19

Our universities are a vital and unique part of our society with an importance that far outweighs their considerable economic value. Yet research into the impact of Covid-19, conducted by London Economics for the University and College Union, shows that universities face a black hole of at least £2.5bn in fee and grant income for 2020-21 as students both in the UK and around the world defer or abandon their plans to study here.

The new analysis suggests that over 230,000 fewer students will enter higher education in 2020 as a result of the crisis, over half of which are international students. That fall in student numbers would translate into a drop in income of around £1.51bn from non-EU students, £350 million from EU students and £612 million from UK students opting to stay away.

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Another thing the virus could kill : More than 1,000 Colleges and Universities

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CHANGED FOREVER?

COVID-19 has disrupted our world in big and small ways. We have shut down as a nation to save lives. We watch the news and hear of deaths in the hundreds and thousands and wonder if we are at the peak yet. Simple acts, such as going to the grocery store or walking the dog, have become significant sources of anxiety. Food insecurity has intensified as increasing lines at food banks demonstrate. We have new respect for service workers. We cheer our new heroes, the first responders, doctors, and nurses who are our frontline soldiers in this war.

And we celebrate our teachers, but we have ignored university professors, who have also had to refocus the way they teach, do research and spread knowledge.

Higher education as a sector is getting hammered. Our national focus is rightly on the current frontline health providers. But we need to realize that despite some federal funding, many universities and colleges may never recover from COVID-19.

Continue reading… “Another thing the virus could kill : More than 1,000 Colleges and Universities”

Financial hits pile up for colleges as some fight to survive

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Colleges across the nation are scrambling to close deep budget holes and some have been pushed to the brink of collapse after the coronavirus outbreak triggered financial losses that could total more than $100 million at some institutions.

Scores of colleges say they’re taking heavy hits as they refund money to students for housing, dining and parking after campuses closed last month. Many schools are losing millions more in ticket sales after athletic seasons were cut short, and some say huge shares of their reserves have been wiped out amid wild swings in the stock market.

Yet college leaders say that’s only the start of their troubles: Even if campuses reopen this fall, many worry large numbers of students won’t return. There’s widespread fear that an economic downturn will leave many Americans unable to afford tuition, and universities are forecasting steep drop-offs among international students who may think twice about studying abroad so soon after a pandemic.

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University holds graduation using robot ‘avatars’ for students: ‘They took it a step further’

A college in Japan has found a high-tech way to ensure its students can still walk across the stage at graduation — sort of.

The students at the Business BreakThrough University (BBT), like many graduates around the world, risked having their ceremony canceled due to the current global health crisis.

However, BBT found a solution. The college, which held its graduation on March 28, arranged to have several students receive their diplomas as digital “avatars” of themselves — complete with screens for faces and caps and gowns on robot “bodies.”

Basically, the students were able to navigate the ceremony from the comfort and safety of their homes while their avatars wheeled up to the school’s president, who handed them certificates.

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Coronavirus Silver Lining: Easier To Get Into Many Top Colleges

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If there is a glimmer of brightness in the current plague besetting the planet, it may be that high school seniors in the United States are suddenly more likely than ever to get the proverbial “fat envelopes” or acceptance letters from their dream schools, as colleges send out final letters of admission in the coming weeks.

“We were already in a very new and uncertain world of higher education enrollments, caused by the demographic shift and the high cost of higher education,” says Bill Conley, vice president of enrollment for Bucknell University, a selective liberal arts college with an enrollment of 3,600 in rural Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. “So this [pandemic] comes along and throws it very much into the food blender, you know—when it was on just a little bit of mince, it is now on full grind.”

As a result, Bucknell and many other schools, unable to court prospective enrollees with festive campus “admitted students days” or even routine campus tours, will be increasing the number of students they send acceptance emails to in an effort to ensure that they yield enough to fill their incoming classes.

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This Colorado college will start offering a cannabis major in the fall

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(CNN) Students on Colorado State University’s Pueblo campus will have the option to study cannabis beginning this fall.

 State officials on Friday approved a bachelor’s of science degree program in Cannabis Biology and Chemistry, according to the Colorado Department of Higher Education, which said it was one of the first such programs in the country.

“The new major is a pro-active response to a rapidly changing national scene regarding the cannabis plant,” a proposal for the program by CSU-Pueblo officials says, citing shifting attitudes toward cannabis and its legalization for recreational use in numerous states, including Colorado.

The program will be part of CSU-Pueblo’s department of chemistry and consist mainly of chemistry and biology coursework with some classes in math and physics, the proposal says.

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