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Wordless Wednesday: Students Protest Tuition Hikes

Can students fight back against tuition increases?




Troy Aikman Graduates from UCLA

Four years is the typical degree plan. Fifth-year seniors aren’t uncommon. But a 20-year senior? Rare, and a title Troy Aikman now has.

The former Dallas Cowboys quarterback kept a promise to his mother to finish school. He completed his final two courses, earned an A in each, and will participate in graduation ceremonies this June to accept a degree in sociology from UCLA.

At 42-years-old, Troy Aikman says he’s “finally taking care of unfinished business.”




Stimulus Passes with Billions for Education

The economic stimulus package that President Obama fought so hard to sell last night in his first public address passed the Senate today. They approved $838 billion, the largest government stimulus since World War II.money

From that package, $83 billion is being earmarked for education, significantly less than the $150 billion approved by the House last week. Newly seated Secretary of Education Arne Duncan says it is “not nearly as much as we need,” and without funding, more than 600,000 education positions stand to be cut due to continuing strain on state budgets.

Under this stimulus spending for Title I and Pell Grants will increase and will make emergency funds available to public schools and state universities.

See more on this story from the New York Times.




Online College Classes: No Easy Ride

student at computer

I’m delighted with the online education revolution.  Thanks to distance learning, more people are gaining access to a college education.  Going back to school has become much simpler than it used to be.

However, students who are taking online courses need to know that, as the Washington Post recently reported, online classes are not as easy as many people think they will be!

Here’s the problem: online courses are a new phenomenon, so people don’t know what to expect.  The online world is associated with fun, entertaining activities and social interaction.  Thus, when students log on to that first online course, sometimes they have misconceptions that these courses are going to be a breeze.  The lack of a teacher in the room also contributes to this sense of fun and freedom. (more…)




College Basketball Recruiters Target Middle School Students

Oh dear…

basketball goal

As reported in the Miami Herald, the NCAA Legislative Council has recently lowered the grade limit on “recruitable” basketball players from ninth grade to seventh grade. This means that the ever competitive world of college basketball scouting is now in the middle schools, as college coaches start keeping their eyes on kids who are as young as 12 years old.

In Encino, California, an eighth grader named Michael Avery has already received a scholarship to play at the University of Kentucky in 2012!

Am I am spoil sport if I say this is totally ridiculous? (more…)




Should Professors Get Bonuses for Good Teaching Evaluations?

Texas A & M University has a controversial new program that’s drawn a lot of criticism in the Chronicle of Higher Education and other publications.  The school is awarding bonuses to faculty members who score in the top 18 percent of the ranks on their teacher evaluations.  Teachers can receive anywhere from $2,500 to $10,000.

Why is this controversial?  On the one hand, some are applauding this system because they hope it will increase accountability in the classroom.  It’s also a way to reward good teaching, which is certainly not valued as much as it should be. (more…)




5 Important Financial Aid Application Action Items

When trying to meet a college’s financial requirements, there are many things to keep in mind. But there are five things that really jump out that seem to be the most important.

1. Get everything turned in on time. And preferably all at once. Check websites for any extra forms (if the schools have their own forms to fill out) and be sure to send everything to the correct address. Sending everything in at once just makes it easier for the college to know what you have and have not turned in.

2. Fill out the forms correctly. Double-check all the forms once you have filled them out. You want to be sure everything is accurate so you can get the correct amount of aid and not miss out on any opportunity to receive financial assistance. (more…)




College Affordability Group Urges Obama, Congress to Help Students

Students: here’s one group that’s looking out for you, The Campaign for College Affordability. This group recently sent Congress and the Obama administration a letter urging them to tackle the college affordability crisis as a part of the stimulus package. They point out that approximately 400,000 students are priced out of the higher education system in the United States every year, and that at this rate, the U.S. workforce will be short $16 million degree holders by 2025.

Here’s what the Campaign for College Affordability proposes:

  1. An increase of the Pell Grant maximum by at least $500 to $5200 (which Obama has proposed as well in his stimulus package proposal), and a subsequent increase of the maximum to $7200 for the following year. (more…)



First Lady Gives Pep Talk to Department of Education

On February 2, First Lady Michelle Obama visited the Department of Education to give employees a pep talk.  She praised new Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, and said that she herself was a product of the department’s work.

Here’s what the First Lady had to say.




The Importance of Sleep for Students

student sleeping on booksI can count the number of nights I get eight hours of sleep on my two hands. I cannot count the number of nights I’ve had less than four hours (or even stayed up all night) even when you include my toes! But this is not something I’m exactly proud of. Recently in Psychology, we discussed the sleep cycle and how your body uses time while you sleep to revitalize itself and restore itself to keep you healthy. It makes me wonder why International Baccaulaureate kids don’t start dropping like flies once we hit our senior year!

The recommended sleep dose for teenagers is anywhere between 8.5-9.25 hours. This is enough time for your body to recuperate and prepare itself for the day to come. Any amount under or above can be detrimental. (more…)




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