Category Archives: Higher Education

Florida Posts First Nationally For Higher Education

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The United States state of Florida was recently named as having the best higher education programs, in general, across the nation.

Conversely, its public schools were ranked 40th overall in terms of grades pre-K through 12th.

According to U.S. News & World Report, a news agency that often ranks primary, secondary, and college-level schools for various accomplishments and standards on a regular basis, Massachusetts earned the title of first place around the nation.

These recent rankings weren’t based on any one or two select factors – rather, U.S. News & World Report researchers looked to a variety of meaningful factors.

Florida achieved the following ratings for this past school year:

• 43rd in high school graduation rates

• 42nd in National Assessment of Educational Progress scores in mathematics

• 41st in quality of pre-kindergarten

• In deviating from the aforementioned objectively low scores, Florida ranked 14th in college readiness

• 16th in preschool enrollment rates

Shifting the focus on Florida’s schools to its higher education rankings, the Sunshine State was listed as the best, overall, for higher education. Here’s how rankings in individual categories worked out:

• 2nd in lowest per student tuition and fees.

• 2nd in graduation rates for two-year colleges.

• 8th in four-year graduation rates.

• 6th in the lowest per student debt at graduation.

March 30, 2018

New Utah Budget to Allocate Billions for Education

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Governor Gary Herbert of Utah is planning a new budget that would spend nine billion dollars a year on education. The state is expecting to receive an extra three hundred and eighty two million dollars in tax revenue next year, and Governor Herbert wants to use the opportunity to help out students. Seventy two percent of that extra money will go towards education. The entire budget for next year, according to Governor Herbert’s plan, amounts to 16.7 billion dollars. He will give extra money to districts that have more kids who are at risk of academic failure.

It is not just traditional colleges and elementary schools that Governor Herbert wants to help. He plans on spending seven million dollars to help out vocational schools and trade schools. Utah is experiencing problems with its workforce and labor rate.

Governor Herbert explained that by going to trade school, students can spend less time in school, spend less money, and go into less debt and still be able to advance their lives and get a good career. He said he is calling next year The Year of Technical College Education.

He is not the only one to do so. Republicans in Congress have been working on a higher education bill that would reform the federal aid system to provide more aid to trade schools and vocational schools.

December 31, 2017

Higher Education Act Finalized

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There are many people in the United States who feel like the education industry should be improved. One of the biggest issues with the current education environment is the cost of college. Few people have the ability to pay for college without taking on massive student loans.

The Higher Education Act has been finalized by Republican leaders. This is a bill that will help reduce the overall cost of education for students. Some people are concerned that the details in the bill do not seem to explain how it will help students with the cost of college.

Student Loans

Student loans are the most common way to pay for college today. The average college student is graduating with record levels of student loan debt. Although borrowing money for college is not a bad thing, there are many students who end up borrowing too much money.

To make things worse, the job market for new graduates has not been strong. There are many college graduates who have trouble landing a job in their field. This results in young people who have debt without a high income to pay it down.

This new education act will have to be passed in both houses of Congress. It will be interesting to see how much the bill changes between now and the time it passes. Everyone agrees that the overall education system needs to be changed. However, few people actually agree on what needs to change to help improve things for college students.

December 30, 2017

How Adults Can Go Back to College

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Many adults are going back to get a degree. If you are a married man or woman with children, and you are going back to college, then here are some tips for you.

Adults who go back to college are not doing it for fun. They are doing it because they want to build a better future for themselves and their family. You need to know what you want to get out of going to college. Once you know your goals, you will be able to determine what your course study should be and which aspects of college you should skip.

You also need to be able to fit college into your schedule. This can be very difficult. One way to do this is by taking part time classes. If you are working full time during the day, consider taking classes at night. Another idea is supplementing your classes with online classes. This will give you more flexibility, and you will be able to study on weekends and when you are off from work.

Besides working classes into your schedule, you also have to work them into your budget. Of course, you can take out student loans. That will help you pay for classes, but you will go into debt. You can consider taking on another job too.

Finally, realize that it will take some acclimating on your part to get back into the academic world. You may need some help remembering certain subjects.

December 29, 2017

Reworking Higher Education moves to House Floor

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After a fourteen hour committee session and a vote that split down party lines, House Republicans are ready to move forward on their draft of the PROSPER act, the Republican revamp of the Higher Education Act.

The reworked law, which would effectively replace the Higher Education Act on the books, aims to streamline student aid, promoting alternative post-secondary programs, and cutting a number of regulations currently in place. Perhaps most significant, the bill whittles down the monstrous number of individual loans down to one loan, one grant, and one work-study program per student, a policy shift many years in the waiting from both sides of the aisle. It will also expand loan coverage to apprenticeship programs and other types of skills-training, in an effort to alleviate the “skills gap” in the American labor force.

The bill, however, comes with a slew of criticisms from the Democrats, who voted unanimously in committee against it. Chief among them is the rolling back of Obama-era regulations which looked to stifle predatory lending practices by for-profit colleges, and the repeal of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, which forgives student debt for those who take a number of public-benefit careers after schooling. There are also repeals of regulations which standardize the value of a credit hour, another regulation that came to light after numerous scandals in the for-profit college market.

Despite a House majority, the bill may come under fire from Republicans in rural districts, whose students will be more strongly impacted.

December 27, 2017

Republican Bill on Higher Education to Move Forward

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The Republican party finalized legislation regarding education overhaul. This overhaul has been in the making for many months. It aims at entirely overhauling the federal aid system for higher education.

The bill has many parts, some obviously good, and some that are not as clear. For example, it aims at making federal aid application for college students easier. It will streamline the process and let students easily apply for federal aid.

At the same time, it will eliminate various regulations that have previously existed, including regulations that the Obama administration put in place. For example, it will eliminate various programs for student loan debt forgiveness if students go into certain public service professions. In addition, it will eliminate various regulations that are aimed at the for-profit higher education industry. Those regulations aim to protect students from scams and for-profit colleges that overcharge for worthless degrees. The goal of the bill’s sponsors is to help trade schools and other schools that teach various work skills to students get more aid. They want to help students who do not want to spend four years getting a college degree and just want to enter the workforce. However, some say that it goes too far, too quickly.

In addition, the DREAM act will certainly be brought up by Democrats. Democrats have tried to append this act, which aims at protecting children of illegal immigrants from deportation and giving them a chance to study and work in the United States, to the education bill.

December 26, 2017

American Graduate Students Protest Against the Tuition Provision of the Tax Bill

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Graduate students across the U.S are infuriated by the proposed GOP’s tax bill which in part undermines access to higher education. In light of the same, graduate students were early today gathered in protest of the bill. Huff Post reports that over 55 protests and walkouts took place today. The demonstrations were put together by two student groups, Grad Tax Walkout and Save Grad Ed. Also, the two groups are spearheading social media campaigns, #SaveGradEd and #GradTaxWalkout. They remain optimistic that the efforts will lead to the removal of the tuition provision from the tax bill.
One such protest occurred at the University of Colorado Boulder. A gathering of over 150 people including graduate students, faculty, administrators, etc. occupied the main courtyard at the university. They made chants in dissent from the provisions of the tax bill. Apparently, graduate students are ready to stand and be counted when it comes to defending their rights to education.
Some provisions in the bill that irked graduate students the most include a proposed increase of their taxable income (tuition taxes), caps on borrowing, and abolishment of loan forgiveness programs. Students wonder why the GOP is hell-bent on targeting graduate students.
Tracy Fehr Sardone, a second-year Ph.D. student at CU and the author of the article, believes that the proposed House bill has some underlying motives. She wonders why the taxes for corporations are being slashed yet students are required to pay more. In her opinion, the bill will adversely affect students from not so well-to-do backgrounds and reinforce the current inequalities within the American society.

December 20, 2017

Higher Education to Be Hurt by GOP Tax Plan

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The Republican party has proposed a controversial tax plan that is expected to negatively impact higher education. Current and former college students already struggle with the high cost of secondary education, but the new tax legislation could make it even more expensive.

Critics have pointed out that the tax reforms will discourage people from seeking certain forms of higher education. Advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, will become more unattainable as costs for these fields become unaffordable for many. In addition to raising taxes on college graduates, the House wants to remove the student loan interest deduction, adding to student debt.

Louisiana State University President F. King Alexander is just one of many educational leaders who has spoken out against the tax plan, saying, “They’re willing to throw higher education and our students under the bus to get a win on tax reform.”

“It’s a very discriminatory, ill-thought-out proposal,” remarks Rise president Leebron. “The proposal literally makes no sense, as a coherent addition to the tax code.”

Political commentators have observed that the tax legislation is apart of a bigger cultural war against higher education institutions. According to Politico, Americans are increasingly apathetic to the problems of graduate students. Colleges and universities are seen as catering to elite and wealthy U.S. citizens while overlooking lower or middle-income people. While it may be difficult to get citizens to care about the tax plan’s impact on higher education, the plan has been criticized in a number of other ways.

December 9, 2017

Florida Ranks Number One In Nation For Higher Education

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The United States News and World Report has released their list of best states for higher education. Florida tops the list. There are several reasons that Florida topped the list. Florida’s universities and colleges have relatively low tuition rates, which is one of the reasons that the state came in first place on the list. Florida also topped the list because over 50 percent of the students who enroll in a two-year program complete it within three years.

Rick Scott, who is the governor of Florida, has been trying to make changes to the educational system. The Florida Senate also wants to make changes to the educational system. They want to increase financial aid for students. They also want to increase pay for faculty. Marshall Criser III is the chancellor of the University system in the state. He has stated that the changes inspire people to further improve the educational system in the state.

Florida is also home to some of the best colleges in the country. Florida State University and The University of Florida frequently top the list of U.S. News And World Report’s best public universities as well as numerous other publications.

Additionally, Florida’s average college debt is lower than the national average. In 2014, the national college debt average was $30,000. In Florida, the average college debt is $23,379. This is 24 percent lower than the national average in the United States. Fifty-three percent of students in Florida graduate with debt. Sixty-eight percent of college graduates in the U.S. have debt when they graduate.

March 25, 2017