In this week’s roundup:
Colleges and universities navigate privacy laws while reporting positive COVID-19 cases, institutions’ external community relationships prove difficult to manage during the pandemic and a new research paper shows that reducing the weight of standardized test scores when considering college applicants tends to improve the diversity of an incoming class.
Stay tuned for our weekly roundup on what trends we're seeing across institutions, how individual colleges and universities are responding to them and what national policy changes are affecting higher ed.
Week of September 2 - September 9
- Due to a lack of a national standardized reporting protocol for COVID-19 cases at colleges and universities, coupled with confusion around privacy laws, experts are weighing in on the type of information institutions can and should provide.
- As institutions make the decision to close campus, experts and Vice President Pence warn against automatically sending students home without testing or quarantining, for fear that they may spread COVID-19 upon their return home.
- Town-gown relations across the country have been uneasy, as economic dependence and public health concerns work against one another and COVID-19 cases rise.
- A student group at the University of Kansas protested against the university opening its doors to students, using flags to signify the amount of COVID-19 cases in the county.
- Eleven students at Northeastern University have been suspended without refunds for the remainder of the semester after they violated university and public health protocols.
- The COVID-19 pandemic has illuminated several areas of possible change for many college athletes and their institutions. The biggest is the prospect of athletes being paid or making money off of their name and likeness.
- Michael Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York City, is donating about $100 million to four historically Black medical schools in the next four years in an attempt to reduce students’ debt burdens.
- Michigan State University’s Board of Trustees will vote this week on renaming a campus building, the namesake of which was an apparent Ku Klux Klan member, per the recommendation of the Trustee Committee on Academic Affairs.
- A recent study funded by the National Science Foundation that investigated graduate students’ experiences during the pandemic reveals reported food and housing insecurity, increased risk of mental health issues and delays in degree completion.
- A new research paper indicates that placing less emphasis on standardized test scores improves institutions’ ability to recruit more diverse students. The paper also points out that stressing other nontraditional factors like interviews did little to help.
- A federal judge in Massachusetts blocked the U.S. Department of Education’s CARES Act rule that only students who can receive financial aid are allowed to receive CARES Act funding.