In this week’s roundup:  

Vaccines and the decisions around them will be a point of concern for the months to come, waitlists are likely to be miles long and institutions’ commencement plans vary. 


March 25 – 31

  • As vaccine eligibility expands in states across the country, higher education institutions are pushing to get as many students inoculated as possible, sometimes opening their own vaccine sites and other times waiting for local officials to give guidance. The overall theme, however: The more students who get the vaccine, the more likely it is that fall 2021 can more closely resemble normalcy.
  • Rutgers University was the first major institution to require students enrolling in the fall to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Many think that this is only the beginning of such institutional policies in higher ed. 
  • Institutions contemplating their vaccine policies should also consider that most international students, at this time, don’t have access to U.S.-approved vaccines in their home countries, if they can get vaccinated at all. 
  • One of the effects of the uptick in applications at more competitive colleges and universities is that the waiting lists are expected to be their longest ever and discouraging for prospective students. 
  • Following public health guidance, some higher education institutions are easing restrictions and planning for increased in-person experiences in the coming months. University of Arizona, for example, is moving classroom capacity to 100 people, up from the previously allowed 50.
  • New data from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center confirms that immediate college enrollment for graduates of low-income and high-poverty high schools fell by 6.8%.
  • Undergraduates at Brown University voted that the Ivy League school should offer reparations to descendants of enslaved people affiliated with the school and its founders. 
  • Social distancing rules prevented traditional Greek life recruiting and parties. Still, two fraternity members at two different institutions have died due to hazing this year, with experts predicting a resurgence of hazing behavior and alcohol abuse as campus life returns to normalcy. 
  • Commencements are going to look different again this year, with institutions taking varying approaches based on state guidance. More colleges and universities are opting for smaller in-person events with limited or no guests, but others will offer virtual ceremonies without formal festivities. 
  • Against the backdrop of the $700 million annual March Madness tournament, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear a pivotal case today testing whether the NCAA’s limits on compensation for student-athletes violate antitrust laws. 
  • Last Wednesday, advocates for doubling the Pell Grant submitted a letter to federal officials. With more than 1,200 organizations signing and President Biden’s earlier inclination to double the Pell Grant, there is a greater possibility for passage. 


(724) 260-0198
PO Box 546
Meadowlands, PA 15347

Los Angeles

(323) 999-5201
6914 N. Vista St.
San Gabriel, CA 91775

New Hampshire

(603) 756-4111
372 West St.
Suite 201B
Keene, NH 03431