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Graduate Students in 6 Departments at Yale Vote to Unionize

After months of legal disputes, graduate students in six academic departments at Yale University have voted to unionize, joining the union of graduate employees, Local 33, on Thursday, the Yale Daily News reports.

The departments of English, geology and geophysics, history, history of art, mathematics, and sociology voted to join the union in the elections. Students in two other departments, East Asian languages and literatures and political science, are still waiting on the results of challenge…

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Betsy DeVos Criticizes Professors in Remarks to Conservative Conference

Betsy DeVos, the U.S. education secretary, said that university faculty members “ominously” tell college students what to think, according to her prepared remarks for a speech on Thursday at the Conservative Political Action Conference.

In the remarks, Ms. DeVos said that college students were also responsible for fighting the “education establishment.”

“The faculty, from adjunct professors to deans, tell you what to do, what to say, and more ominously, what to think. They say that if you voted …

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Senate Democrats Ask DeVos to Explain Falwell’s Higher-Ed Task Force

Senate Democrats are asking Betsy DeVos, the education secretary, to enlighten them about a federal task force to be led by Jerry Falwell Jr., president of Liberty University.

In a letter released on Thursday, six Democratic senators, led by Patty Murray of Washington and Elizabeth A. Warren of Massachusetts, said they were “extremely concerned” by the lack of public explanation regarding the purview of the task force and Mr. Falwell’s potential conflicts of interest.

The Trump administration ha…

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Trump Administration Rescinds Obama-Era Guidance on Transgender Students

[Updated (2/22/2017, 11 p.m.) with additional details.]

The Trump administration withdrew Obama-era guidance late Wednesday on the rights of transgender students, to allow the Education and Justice Departments to “further and more completely consider” the controversial issue.

In a “Dear Colleague” letter, the departments said they were dropping the earlier guidance, which cited Title IX as the basis for requiring public-school districts to allow transgender students to use restrooms that match t…

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College Board Seeks to Tighten SAT Security Worldwide

The College Board, which owns the SAT, is taking steps to strengthen security following a wave of cheating and test stealing, the Associated Press reports.

In moves that will be formally announced on Wednesday, the New York-based company hopes to prevent leaks and dissuade potential cheaters. Planned reforms include cutting back on the number of international testing dates from six to four, communicating with law-enforcement agencies about people suspected of stealing test materials, and increas…

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Dean at Georgia Tech Will Be New Chancellor of UC-Davis

Gary May, dean of the Georgia Institute of Technology’s College of Engineering, will be the next chancellor of the University of California at Davis, it announced on Tuesday.

The UC system’s Board of Regents will vote on Mr. May’s appointment on Thursday, and assuming its approval he will take office on August 1, the university said.

Until then Ralph Hexter will continue to serve as interim chancellor. Mr. Hexter took over when Linda P.B. Katehi resigned last summer following a three-month inves…

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Grad Student Finds Lost Novel by Walt Whitman That Hints at ‘Leaves of Grass’

A graduate student at the University of Houston has discovered a previously unknown novel by the young Walt Whitman, reports The New York Times.

The 36,000-word Life and Adventures of Jack Engle was published anonymously in a little-known New York newspaper, The Sunday Dispatch, in 1852, when the writer was in his early 30s and worked at various newspapers. That was three years before the poet first published Leaves of Grass, which scholars say the lost novel foreshadows in various ways.

Careful…

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AmeriCorps Joins NEH and NEA Among Programs Trump May Cut

A list of programs that could be cut in the Trump administration’s forthcoming budget includes not only the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, but AmeriCorps, The New York Times reports.

Although the aim of the cuts is to trim domestic spending, most of the targeted programs cost less than $500 million per year, a drop in the bucket for a government whose spending is likely to exceed $4 trillion. The previously reported cuts in the NEA and NEH generate…

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DeVos Says Her Higher-Ed Views Are ‘Very Aligned’ With Trump’s

Betsy DeVos, the recently confirmed secretary of education, said her views on higher-education policy are “very aligned” with those of President Trump, in an interview with Axios published on Friday.

It is not unusual for an education secretary’s views to align closely with those of the person who nominated her, as The Chronicle has noted, and this administration is no exception. In the interview, Ms. DeVos said both she and President Trump believe that four-year degrees are not doing a good job…

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Law Dean at Florida International U. Is Tapped for Labor Secretary

[Updated (2/17/2017, 10:27 a.m.) with a statement from the university.]

R. Alexander Acosta, dean of Florida International University’s College of Law, is President Trump’s nominee for labor secretary, the president announced on Thursday.

Mr. Acosta, a former U.S. attorney, will replace Mr. Trump’s former nominee, Andrew Puzder, who withdrew from the nomination after facing broad opposition from Republicans in the U.S. Senate.

Mr. Acosta has served as the university’s law dean since 2009. Before…