Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Just another chore

No benefits to volunteering when you're young. From The Telegraph.

Volunteering is not beneficial until you hit 40, study finds
Volunteering has long been known to boost mental health and raise happiness levels, but a new study suggests the benefits do not kick in until the age of 40. 
Researchers at the University of Southampton looked at data from the British Household Panel Survey which sampled adults living in 5,000 households every year from 1991 to 2008. 
The questionnaires measured mental health and emotional wellbeing and the team compared it to how often people volunteered.

They found that those who volunteered regularly scored an average of six per cent higher on wellbeing tests across every age group. But when the results were teased out it soon became clear the overall figures was masking a big jump for the over 40s, and no impact at all for younger people. 
Figures showed that young people aged 21-25 had good emotional health whether they volunteered or not. As they got older it started to decline. But from the age of 40 mental health and wellbeing improved significantly for those volunteering, peaking at the age of 76 to 80 when there was 12 per cent boost to mental health for those who gave up their time to help others. 
The researchers speculate that volunteering at younger ages may just be viewed as another obligation or chore,  but becomes more meaningful in early middle age as people become involved in personal or community activities, such as helping out at a child’s school.

Monday, February 20, 2017


Ain't just a term in football. The rates in Tennessee, and actually all over, should be better. From The Tennessean.

While state efforts have helped boost college readiness and access to higher education, college completion rates remain “unacceptably low,” according to a report released Wednesday. 
On average, less than 45 percent of students at Tennessee two- and four-year public colleges complete their degrees, according to Complete Tennessee’s “Room to Grow” report. 
The low completion rates — Tennessee ranks 38th in the nation in public university graduation rates and 40th in community college graduation rates — could have repercussions for students and employers. 
Students who don’t complete their college degrees are more likely to incur debt and have lower salaries and a lower quality of life, said Kenyetta Lovett, executive director of Complete Tennessee, a non-profit focused on increasing postsecondary access and completion. 
And as more jobs require college degrees, low completion rates in the state may cause problems for employers, according to the report. 
Twenty-eight higher education institutions in Tennessee, most of them community colleges, do not graduate more than half of students in a timely matter, the report says. 
College completion rates are even lower for racial minorities and low-income students.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

And the top

Kelchen on Education's 2016 "not top 10" list is...

(1) Mount St. Mary’s University (MD) president resigned after his infamous “drown the bunnies” comment and other dubious decisions. It should go without saying that it is inappropriate for a college president to tell faculty that sometimes “you just have to drown the bunnies…put a Glock to their heads.” This quote, by president Simon Newman, was in response to faculty concerns about a plan to cull students early in the semester (before they counted in retention and graduation rates) using the results of an incoming student survey. Needless to say, when the campus newspaper ran the story, the campus erupted in chaos. The president responded by trying to fire the paper’s advisor, which garnered even more negative attention. After the university’s accreditor raised concerns, Newman resigned within days.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Save the date!

AHEA – Adult Higher Education Alliance 2017 Annual Conference
 Writing Our Way: Giving Voice to Adult Learning
Orlando, Florida
March 9-10, 2017
Pre-conference workshops on March 8, 2017

Thursday, February 9, 2017

The usual suspects found among the most and least education states

Massachusetts, Maryland, and Colorado are the three most educated. West Virginia, Mississippi, and Louisiana are the least. Tennessee is 43rd, behind Texas, Oklahoma, and South Carolina of all places. From WalletHub.

For a growing number of Americans, a good education is the ticket to a better future. College opens doors to better career opportunities, higher earnings and new social connections, among other benefits. But how much schooling one receives also matters to some extent. Generally, the higher the level of education one attains, the more income potential grows and the lower chances of unemployment become. 
In this study, WalletHub’s analysts examined the key determinants of a well-educated population: educational attainment, school quality, and achievement gaps between genders and races. We compared all 50 states across 11 total metrics grouped by category. The data set ranges from “percentage of adults aged 25 and older with at least a high school diploma” to “average university quality” to “gender gap in educational attainment.”

Source: WalletHub