Category Archives: Government

Politics and policy in higher education.


One-Third of Low-Income Student Borrowers Who Rehabbed Loans Could Default Again

[Updated (10/17/2016, 11:45 p.m.) with additional information and editing changes.]

One in three student-loan borrowers with very low incomes who have “cured” a loan in default in the past year are likely to default again, according to a report released on Monday by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The federal agency’s student-loan ombudsman’s latest annual report highlights complaints the bureau has received from the “most economically distressed” borrowers about the transition from de…


U. of Wisconsin Spent $24 Million on Faculty Retention After Perceived Threats to Tenure

After a difficult year for higher education in Wisconsin, including what many academics saw as a clear threat to tenure, the University of Wisconsin at Madison spent a total of $23.6 million on faculty retention. Twenty-nine professors rejected counteroffers and left the flagship campus during the 2016 fiscal year, while 111 who entertained outside job offers were retained.

Sarah C. Mangelsdorf, the provost, said Madison had a 77-percent retention rate over all, slightly higher than the universi…


Education Dept. Settles With DeVry Over Job-Placement Claims

The U.S. Department of Education has settled with DeVry University, a subsidiary of the for-profit DeVry Education Group, after the institution put unsubstantiated job-placement claims in its recruitment materials, the department announced in a news release on Thursday.

In 2015, DeVry could not provide data or further information on the assertion that since 1975, 90 percent of graduates had found jobs in their field within six months of graduation, the release said. According to federal law, ins…


Quincy U. Faculty Votes No Confidence in University’s President

Faculty members at Quincy University have voted no confidence in the Illinois institution’s president, Robert Gervasi, citing its financial situation, according to The Herald-Whig.

“It is what it is. There’s really nothing to report right now,” Mr. Gervasi told the newspaper. “We’ll continue to work with the board and go from there.” The no-confidence vote, which was presented to the governing board on Monday, will be discussed at its next meeting, on Saturday.

The vote stems in part from Mr. Ge…


Iowa State President Apologizes to Students for Flying University Plane on Personal Trips

Steven Leath, president of Iowa State University, told the student government there on Wednesday that he would be more cautious from now on about combining personal and business trips, the Associated Press reports.

An investigation by the Associated Press found that Mr. Leath had damaged a university airplane while flying back from a family vacation in North Carolina. He also flew a larger university plane to his North Carolina home, on fund-raising trips with a celebrity bowhunter, and to trans…


Calif. Adjuncts Score Partial Victory in Bid for New Workplace Rights

Adjunct instructors at California’s community colleges have won significant new workplace rights — though not as many as they seemed poised to gain initially — under legislation signed last week by Gov. Jerry Brown of California.

The first of two bills signed by Governor Brown, Assembly Bill 1690, had been so sweeping in its list of new adjunct rights at the colleges that it prompted worries that it might infringe on local governance of such institutions. The second measure the governor signed,


Education Dept. Is Sued Over Debt Collection From Former Corinthian Students

A former student of the defunct Corinthian Colleges Inc. is suing the U.S. Education Department to ”halt the certification of all Corinthian-related debts,” as a U.S. senator wrote to the department asking why it was collecting such debts.

Sen. Elizabeth A. Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, sent a letter to the department on Thursday, arguing that it was collecting on loans owed by former students of the for-profit educator despite having promised to forgive those debts.

Corinthian went bankrupt


National Default Rate on Student Loans Declines for Third Straight Year

The overall three-year cohort default rate on federal student loans dropped in newly released data, marking the third straight year the rate has fallen, the U.S. Department of Education announced on Wednesday.

The percentage of borrowers who defaulted on federal loans within three years of entering repayment dropped from 11.8 percent to 11.3 percent for those who started repayment between the 2012 and 2013 fiscal years.

Colleges with high default rates may lose their access to federal student ai…


Chicago State U. Enrolls Just 86 Freshmen This Fall

Chicago State University enrolled just 86 freshmen this fall semester, and its undergraduate enrollment has dropped by 32 percent over the past year, the Chicago Tribune reports.

The university now has 3,578 students, and total enrollment is down by a quarter. This is just one of the many concerns for the struggling public university.

Just this month its president, Thomas J. Calhoun Jr., was let go after only nine months at the helm.

Chicago State has struggled to make it through the Illinois bu…


Education Dept. Revokes Recognition of Embattled Accreditor of For-Profit Colleges

[Last updated (9/22/2016, 8:26 p.m.) with additional reaction.]

The U.S. Education Department has decided to revoke the federal recognition of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, the much-maligned accreditor of many for-profit colleges.

Emma Vadehra, chief of staff to the secretary of education, wrote in a letter on Thursday that she agreed with the recommendations of Education Department analysts and the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrit…