Colorado Measure Against Civil Disobedience Incites Student Protests

At least 700 high school students in Jefferson County Colorado walked out of class Wednesday morning to protest proposed changes to their schools’ history curriculum.

colorado protest

The suggested changes from their school board include an evaluation-based system for awarding teachers’ raises, and a curriculum committee that would push for the promotion of “positive aspects” of the United States and its history. The committee would ask educators to avoid any material that may encourage or condone “civil disorder, social strife or disregard of the law.”

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Here are the Top 10 Universities, According to U.S. News

Love ‘em or hate ‘em the annual U.S. Rankings of the country’s universities have been revealed. Though many accuse the rankings of being an outdated system where the same schools always rise to the top, they can be an interesting way to compare some of the many institutions of higher education in the country.

princeton

Though you really can’t narrow the college experience down to a few measurable data points, the people behind the U.S. News rankings try their best to determine what combination of factors creates the nation’s top schools. Factors considered include student retention, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources, alumni giving, and graduation rates.

Based on those factors and more, here are the top 10 American universities for 2015.

10. California Institute of Technology
Tuition and fees (2014-2015): $43,362
Enrollment: 977
The student-to-faculty ratio at the California Institute of Technology is 3:1. Its students are actively involved in research projects with NASA, the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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Campuses Still Don’t Know What to do About Rape

If you were the victim of sexual assault while at school, you would expect that something would be done about it. Unfortunately, there are now nearly 80 colleges and universities under federal investigation due to Title IX violations stemming from how the institutions of higher education handle reports of sexual assault. Hint: it’s not well.

Many times, when sexual assault or rape is reported on college campuses, the consequences hardly match the crime. Then there are the times when instead of the rapist being punished, the victim is blamed because they were too drunk or too scantily clad to have a legitimate complaint.

Take for example the case of a young woman who was raped after a party at the University of Kansas last year. She had been drinking, and was assisted back to the dorms by a fellow student. The young woman was raped, she reported the attack, and the young man later confessed to the campus police that he had continued to have sex with her after she said, “no,” “stop,” and “I can’t do this.”

Even with the confession, the local police refused to prosecute the male student for sexual assault. The local district attorney announced on September 3 that he will consider filing charges in the case due to receiving new information. The alleged attack happened on October 18, 2013.

The school did take action against the male student, punishing him by putting him on probation, banning him from campus housing, and telling him to write a four-page paper. KU also considered giving him community service, but it was decided that measure was too “punitive.” In the meantime, the young woman was threatened with arrest for underage drinking at the party before the alleged rape.

“People need to know how little attention this is being given when they do come forward to the university,” the young woman said about the lenient punishment and lack of support from local law enforcement to the Huffington Post.

“You get serious consequences for plagiarizing, and you get horrible consequences if you have a six-pack of beer in your dorm. I think this is more serious than those, and it’s given very little attention.”

Another young woman who was the victim of rape is taking matters into her own hands to get others to pay attention to her case. She says she was raped by a classmate on the first day of her sophomore year at Columbia University. Now a senior, she has designed her senior thesis to aid in her protest that rapist has been allowed to remain on campus.

In May, she wrote in Time what her experience has been like. “Every day, I am afraid to leave my room. Even seeing people who look remotely like my rapist scares me. Last semester I was working in the dark room in the photography department. Though my rapist wasn’t in my class, he asked permission from his teacher to come and work in the dark room during my class time. I started crying and hyperventilating. As long as he’s on campus with me, he can continue to harass me.”

Her protest is simple act of carrying around a twin-sized dorm mattress similar to the one on which she was attacked. She intends to carry it “for as long as I attend the same school as my rapist.”

Sexual assault and rape are serious issues on college campuses. It’s not a growing trend, but rather a trend that is gaining much more attention that it has in years past. Hopefully, with the added attention, victims may finally get the justice they deserve.

Also Read:

Rape Victim Fights Two-Year Court Battle for Not Cheering Attacker

Name of Klan Member Dropped from University of Texas Dorm

Students Invent Nail Polish That Detects Date Rape Drugs

Video by the Columbia Daily Spectator


Students Invent Nail Polish That Detects Date Rape Drugs

Even if you’ve never been to a party or bar, I bet you know their number one rule: Never leave your drink unattended. There’s also its cousin, never accept a drink from someone if you didn’t see them make it. Why all the rules?

mixed drinks

In the United States, 18 percent of women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime. That’s nearly one in five. Often, the assaults are facilitated by the use of date rape drugs. These include Rohypnol, Xanax and GHB.

Problem is, these drugs can be difficult to detect, and up to now, no one has figured out a reliable, and discreet, way to check for them and still maintain your drink. That may change with a new idea from four undergraduates at NC State University. They’re developing a nail polish, Undercover Colors, which changes colors in the presence of common date rape drugs.

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How to Be a Better Freshman

Freshman year is a big deal. You’re experiencing and encountering so many new things at once, and they all seem like make it or break it situations. However, you can relax knowing that while everything seems like a huge deal, in the long run, most things aren’t. By following some simple tips, you’ll be navigating your first year of college so well; people may think you’re a sophomore!

freshmen

DO create some distance; DON’T be a stranger
For many incoming freshmen, this is the first time they’ve been away from home. No matter the distance, if you’re living on campus instead of at home, it’s going to be an adjustment. Establish some sense of independence while living in the dorms. Instead of calling the parents every time you can’t figure out laundry, roommate problems or homework, try working it out on your own or asking someone on your floor.

Of course, don’t ignore your family completely. Check in periodically and share how you’re doing. Try to visit at least a few times a semester. You’ll be surprised to find how much those conversations and visits mean after being away for a while.

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Looking for a Party? We’ve Got Your Biggest and Tamest Party School Rankings

As students are heading back to campus this fall, at least some of them have only one thing on their minds: Where’s the next party? If they’re headed to UC Santa Barbara, they probably won’t have to look too hard to find it. However, if they attend Liberty University, a party is going to be pretty hard to come by.

college party

Mike Simmons of eCollegeFinder created maps outlining the biggest party schools and the tamest party schools in each state after looking at the party data gathered by College Prowler. Each school was ranked on a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being the biggest and tamest party scene on the respective scales.

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FAFSA Error Affects Thousands of Students’ Financial Aid

If your financial aid package for the upcoming school year seems off, you may want to have it checked. An error on the online Free Application for Federal Student Aid, better known as FAFSA, made some applicants appear far better off financially than they actually are.

financial aid

The error on the online form causes some low-income filers appear to be millionaires, which can have a dramatic impact on what, if any, federal financial aid they can receive.

Jeff Baker, policy liaison at the Education Department’s Office of Federal Student Aid told student-aid administrators at the Chronicle of Higher Education that the error has already impacted thousands of borrowers, and is likely to impact even more.

“It’s a serious problem,” Baker said at the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators’ annual meeting. “We have to fix it.”

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Hookah’s Healthy Alternative Claims Go Up in Smoke

You may have heard that smoking hookah is better for you than smoking cigarettes. Turns out, it’s all in how you define “better.” A recent study published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention indicates that smoking hookah, or water pipes, may be more dangerous than originally thought.

hookah

Hookahs most often consist of a head connected to a water jar with a hose attached and a mouthpiece. Flavored tobacco is placed below burning charcoal in the head, and the resultant vapor is cooled then smoked. In the United States, Europe and the eastern Mediterranean, studies indicate a significant increase in hookah smoking. This increase is especially evident in younger people. It’s estimated that 1 in 5 teens smoke hookah, and as many as 40 percent of U.S. college students report using a water pipe.

This increase is likely due to the popularly held belief that hookah are less harmful than cigarettes. However, the study results show otherwise.

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Your Friends’ Moods Online Can Impact Yours in Reality

By this time, I think we’ve all heard the story of the Facebook experiment that caused some people to see mostly positive posts and others to see mostly negative posts. When it was revealed the study took place without the knowledge of any of Facebook’s users, people were outrage and dismissed the study as unethical.

facebook mobile

While I personally agree that the way information was gathered for the study was pretty sketchy, but it did yield some interesting results. The study showed that the more positive posts you see, the more positive things you’re likely to post yourself. The same went for negative posts.

According to the Pew Research Internet Project, 90 percent of people in the 18-29 age bracket use social networking sites. If we take Facebook’s study to be true, that means 90 percent of college-age people’s emotions are somewhat influenced by their virtual social network.

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For-Profit Colleges Under Fire

Earlier this year, President Obama and his administration made waves when they announced new steps to address concerns about student loan debt. They announced new regulations that would require career colleges to do a better job of preparing students for gainful employment. If the schools do not meet the new regulations, they could lose access to federal student aid.

books and money

In a release about the new regulations, U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan said, “Higher education should open up doors of opportunity, but students in these low-performing programs often end up worse off than before they enrolled: saddled by debt and with few – if any – options for a career.”

“The proposed regulations address growing concerns about unaffordable levels of loan debt for students enrolled in these programs by targeting the lowest-performing programs, while shining a light on best practices and giving all programs an opportunity to improve.”

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