In this week's roundup:
Institutions are moving past the pandemic, more students of color are enrolled, and amicus briefs are filed in support of affirmative action.
July 28-August 3
- COVID-19 precautions, including requirements for masking, testing, vaccinations and isolation, are being scaled back this upcoming academic year. Administrators cite easy access to vaccinations and low hospitilization rates as grounds for the shifts.
- The Supreme Court said it would hear two cases challenging the consideration of race in college admissions on Oct. 31. The court’s conservative supermajority may overturn more than 40 years of precedent for using race as one factor among many in evaluating applicants.
- The American Council on Education has urged the Supreme Court to uphold the practice, arguing that ignoring race in admissions would infringe on academic freedom.
- Proposals for student debt cancellations are aiming to overhaul a system widely considered broken. While Democrats in Congress support cancellation, Republicans view it as a power grab.
- An Indiana University professor of obstetrics and gynecology faced “politicized bullying” for performing an abortion on a 10-year-old rape victim. Little was known about the doctor who performed the procedure until recently, and the situation has widened a rift with faculty.
- Higher education institutions are looking to staffing firms in order to keep remote employees on their payroll. Remote work continues to appeal to employees while creating difficulty for institutions.
- The University of Colorado Boulder will guarantee admission for students who complete the Colorado Community College System degree program. The CCCS’s director of student affairs wants students to have an associate degree to fall back on while also encouraging them to pursue their bachelor’s.
- New data shows how some private colleges enrolled more Black, Latinx and low-income students at the start of the Fall 2021 academic year. Enrollment increased for Black and Latinx students by 19% and 9% respectively.
- A new report from Morning Consult finds a lack of trust in higher education among Gen Z. Only half of young adults say they have trust in higher ed institutions compared to 65% of baby boomers.
- Institutions are facing a higher demand for student housing following two years of the pandemic. While long waitlists for on-campus housing can be frustrating for students, it can also be viewed positively with an increase in enrollment and a desire to live on campus.