College campus in the fall.

In this week's roundup:

Student-athletes may be able to unionize in the distant future, Vermont State Colleges System plans to combine three state institutions and the recently released census numbers confirm the fears of some institutions. 

September 30 - October 6

  • A top attorney from the National Labor Relations Board issued a memo saying that “athletes at private colleges qualify as employees under federal law, entitling them to the same protections as other private sector employees, including the right to unionize.” While experts say it’ll likely be a while before unionizations happen, it is not out of the realm of possibility now. 
  • Republican Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina introduced a bill that would tax student-athletes’ scholarships. The NIL Scholarship Tax Act would require players that earn over $20,000 through endorsements to report their athletic scholarships as taxable income. Burr said through a news release that the bill is to preserve the amateurism of college athletics. 
  • The University of California system intends to increase enrollment by 20,000 at its existing institutions. That would be roughly the size of a new campus, on top of the existing 286,000-student, 10-campus public university system. 
  • As fall census numbers come out, college towns may feel another unfortunate effect of the pandemic: a blow to their census count. 
  • The Vermont State Colleges System’s governing board voted Wednesday for Vermont Technical College, Castleton University, and Northern Vermont University to combine into Vermont State University. The decision was made to help the system gain financial footing.
  • The federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness program is reportedly going to undergo a “significant overhaul” in the coming months and years, to make it easier to understand and utilize. 
  • A report from the Government Accountability Office shows that student loan borrowers who experienced the closure of their institution in the middle of their studies often do not know about the federal programs available to them to help erase their student loan debt. 
  • Mental health is not leaving the national conversation anytime soon. In fact, leaders are wise to take a long, hard look at their campus policies and whether or not they reflect genuine compassion regarding mental health. 

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