Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Dual enrollment in Florida

The Community College Times calls it early college in this article, but that connotes a whole different thing.  Early College offers the whole associate degree to high schoolers, and is often aimed at middle-of-the-road students who otherwise might be uninterested in higher education.  Increasingly, these efforts are managed by continuing education units.

Early college gives high schoolers a head start
“You don’t have classes every day in college, and you’re expected to be much more independent,” says Anish Khanorkar, a high school sophomore enrolled in the Early College Program at Seminole State College of Florida (SSCF). “Early College has really helped me to prepare for what colleges would expect me to do.”

Khanorkar, 15, is one of more than 400 Seminole County high school students taking college classes at SSCF through the program. Early college, also called dual enrollment, is an acceleration program that allows high school students to simultaneously earn credit toward high school completion and toward a two- or four-year degree or a career certificate.
Contrast this with what Eastern Kentucky University is doing with its Middle College, as reported at Kentucky.com.  EKU is one of the few universities taking on this function.

EKU and Madison County create a new Kentucky middle college
The Middle College at Eastern Kentucky University was unveiled Thursday at EKU. It's not for high school students who are doing advanced work, heading the student government and filling out college applications in their spare time.

Rather, the Middle College is for those who its founders say are being allowed to slip through the cracks of the current education system — those who risk never making it to college.

Madison County Schools Superintendent Tommy Floyd said that the Middle College students — starting with 60 juniors in the 2011-12 school year and growing to 60 juniors and 60 seniors in subsequent years — should be better able to improve their education and provide for their families.

"If we're real serious about economic prosperity," Floyd said, "what are we doing different from what we've done in the last 100 years?"

He said the new program would serve as both a nudge and a mentoring experience for average high-school students to become successful college students.

The Middle College will be on EKU's campus and will allow students to earn high school diplomas while taking college courses. It seeks students who are underperforming and members of populations that are underrepresented in college. Admission will be based on an application, screening interview, grade-point average, ACT score and a counselor's recommendation.

Middle College students will not return to their home schools, but will receive a diploma from one of the two Madison County high schools when they complete 12th grade. Free college tuition is available for up to 18 hours of college credit.

Today is the last day to vote

For ACHE Board of Directors and Vice President

Please see the candidate profile page or the May issue of Five Minutes with ACHE for more information about the candidates.

Standing for Director-at-Large:
~Ruth Bettandorff
~Tim Sanford
~Judy Stang
Standing for Vice President:
~Jeffery Alejandro
~Brian Van Horn
Click here for your ballot.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Washington for-profit cuts-and-runs

Leave students holding the bag.  From The Spokesman Review.

Alpine College closure leaves students, staff seeking answers
The note on Alpine College’s doors said “permanently closed.” Still-full staff mailboxes and dishes in the employee kitchen sink were signs of the abrupt departure.

Students who arrived Monday for classes or to look for answers were angry.

“I’m lost,” said Christi Snyder, who was taking phlebotomy courses. “Do we have to start (our education) over? It just doesn’t make sense.”

The closure shocked students and staff because it comes just a week after students had started new classes and paid tuition. Spokane Valley’s Alpine College, a for-profit career school licensed in 2002, issued a statement Monday citing money problems as well as concerns for the health of one of the college’s owners as the reasons for shutting down.

Other signals were emerging, too.

County court records show the school allegedly was behind on its taxes and other debts. An executive director, Genevieve Lois Taylor, was fired for allegedly misusing college funds to make about $45,000 in personal purchases and is scheduled to stand trial next month in Spokane County Superior Court for first-degree theft. And in 2007, the school’s owner, Kevin J. Williams, was barred by a national board from practicing as a certified public accountant for two years.

CAUCE Annual Conference

The 58th Annual Conference of the Canadian Association for University Continuing Education
Sense & Sustainability
June 5-8, 2011
Toronto, Ontario.

The theme, Sense & Sustainability, promises to challenge, inspire and unite adult educators to search for new and effective ways to enlighten students, cultivate existing and new programs, and sustain Continuing Education. Sessions will relate to conference streams: Enlightenment, Economics and Environment.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Gee, you think?

I suspected in the 1970s that an English major would earn less than an engineering major.  At least starting out.  But I'm glad the question is settled--petroleum engineers lead the list with a median salary of $120,000.  It's noted, though, a college degree is still financially worth it in the long run.  And I love the economist's quote at the end.  From Mary Beth Marklein, writing in USA Today.

College major analysis: Engineers get highest salaries
•Annual incomes for liberal arts and humanities majors — think English, history, philosophy — averaged $47,000. About 40% of those majors also obtained a graduate degree, which boosted their average earnings almost 50%.

•Four majors among the 10 with the highest average annual earnings also are among the least popular majors, "suggesting there's a real demand in these areas that we have yet to meet," Carnevale says. Those are mathematics and computer science, naval architecture and marine engineering, metallurgical engineering, and mining and mineral engineering

Richard Fry, an economist who crunched lifetime earnings data for the Pew report, cautions that the data can't predict what today's students will make: "The future is inherently unknown."

Would college graduates do it again?

Yes, they would.  Catherine Rampell, writing in The New York Times, has this chart, based upon “Unfulfilled Expectations: Recent College Graduates Struggle in a Troubled Economy,” Heldrich Center for Workforce Development, Rutgers University.

Once Again: Is College Worth It?

From the Urban Dictionary

Thought Wad:  A sudden burst and outpouring of ideas, thoughts, creativeness, or conversation topics, often followed by a severe lack thereof.
"Why'd you dump him?" 
"He was boring. He blew his whole thought wad on our first date, then had nothing." 

Thursday, May 26, 2011

TOEFL Preparation Course available

East Tennessee State University’s Office of Professional Development, in conjunction with the Honors College and the Department of Literature and Language, will offer an online Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) Preparation Course.

Taught by Dr. Theresa McGarry of the ETSU Department of Literature and Language, the course prepares learners of English as a second or foreign language for the iBT™ TOEFL, a test with internet-based format that evaluates the ability to use and understand English in an academic setting.

The course includes extensive instruction in vocabulary (addressing the entire Academic Word List in both spoken and written form), grammar and pronunciation, in addition to instruction in the skills required for the reading, writing, listening and speaking sections of the exam.

A key component of the course is practice with individualized feedback from the professor, including assistance with pronunciation for students with the technology to submit sound files. Students also complete practice tests online, in formats closely resembling that of the actual exam.

The course, which begins June 1 and ends July 12, is conducted completely online, allowing participants to select convenient times, day or night, to access the course and complete daily assignments. The cost of the course is $350.

To register, go to http://etsuaw.etsu.edu/wconnect/ace/home.htm  or call the Office of Professional Development at (800) 222-3878.

The Student Princes?

Just one of the strangest college mascots listed in Her Campus.

The Strangest College Mascots: Part II

ACHE elections continue through May 31

It's time to vote!
ACHE Board of Directors and Vice President
Please see the candidate profile page or the May issue of Five Minutes with ACHE for more information about the candidates.

Standing for Director-at-Large:
~Ruth Bettandorff
~Tim Sanford
~Judy Stang
Standing for Vice President:
~Jeffery Alejandro
~Brian Van Horn
Click here for your ballot.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Always connected to work

By my iPhone.  One big difference between working when I started back in 20th Century and today is that I'm never disconnected from work.  Unless I take the steps to do so.  And the only times I've done that is when I was in Hawaii on vacation and when I was on a cruise recently. I have to say it didn't feel right.  From iPass.com.

iPass Mobile Workforce Report Finds the End of Downtime as Smartphone and Tablet Usage Rise
This quarter’s report found an end to downtime, as 91 percent of mobile workers use their personal downtime to check their smartphones. Nearly 30 percent of mobile workers check their smartphone every six-to-12 minutes during downtime. The report, which drew from the experiences of more than 3,700 mobile employees at 1,100 enterprises worldwide, also found 61 percent of mobile workers sleep with their smartphone; 43 percent within arm’s reach. This intimate relationship with the smartphone has led to 38 percent of mobile workers waking up to check their smartphone during the night and 35 percent checking email first thing in the morning – even before getting dressed or eating breakfast.

UT planning to have more graduate students teach

I don't think this is a bad idea, although some of the comments to the article express disgust.  Is a graduate student really that much worse of a teacher than a new faculty hire might be?  At the the student probably has faculty mentor to help him or her.  I taught my first college English class with zero training but had the support to help me through.  It was a simpler time...From The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Grad Students Take the Podium in More Undergraduate Courses
Indeed, settling into the role of teaching assistant can be an adjustment. Nick Lopes, a graduate student in the department of biochemistry and molecular and cellular biology at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, recalls times when he felt "a little bit unprepared" to stand in front of a class. During the first lab class he taught, Biology 101, Mr. Lopes and other teaching assistants met weekly with experienced graduate-student teachers to get inside knowledge of how various experiments might play out in the lab, among other things. But his second lab class, human physiology, had no such meetings.

Mr. Lopes taught three human-physiology lab sections each week this spring. "The first section is like your guinea pig," he says. "You just have to figure out what works."

"The first section is like your guinea pig," Mr. Lopes says. "You just have to figure out what works." Graduate students are considered more approachable than typical professors, he says.

"The first section is like your guinea pig," Mr. Lopes says. "You just have to figure out what works." Graduate students are considered more approachable than typical professors, he says.

Graduate students like Mr. Lopes play a key role in the university's plan to move more biology majors through first-year courses that once had waiting lists teeming with names.

"The number of students majoring in biology is growing, and there was a growing demand for freshman and sophomore biology classes," says Cynthia Peterson, chair of Knoxville's department of biochemistry and cellular and molecular biology. "But there wasn't anything that we could do about it with the level of staffing that we had."

Some of the core courses that biology majors have to take before advancing to higher-level studies had waiting lists of about 100 students last year. The division had enough faculty members to add sections to its biodiversity and cell-biology courses but not enough people to teach the lab sections each lecture course required, says Beth Schussler, director of biology teaching and learning.

Ms. Schussler and the heads of the university's three biology departments put together a plan last year for administrators that detailed student demand for biology courses and asked for six more graduate teaching assistants. Senior officials at the institution, whose strategic plan to become a top-25 research university includes a focus on graduating more students in four years, gave $185,000 to the biology departments to hire the teaching assistants they requested. The money for the new graduate students came from $1.7-million in revenue from tuition increases that was set aside for efforts to improve retention and graduation rates.

"There are going to be persistent bottlenecks in these classes," says Susan Martin, provost at Tennessee. "It makes sense to invest long term here."

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Is the interweb reducing home schooling?

Maybe in Colorado.  From The Denver Post.

Dip in number of Colorado home-schoolers may be linked to surge in online enrollment
For JD Elvrum and his family, public school had too many strikes against it.

"His first three years of school were marred by teachers' strikes," in his Pennsylvania school district, said JD's mom, Tillie Elvrum. Add to that a slight learning disability and many moves as a result of his father's career — in the Air Force and later in the private sector — and the bottom line was brick-and-mortar schools weren't going to work.

So, like thousands of parents across the country, Tillie Elvrum looked into home schooling.

What she found scared her. "I wasn't a teacher, and this is my kid's education. It's my No. 1 priority, and I didn't want to screw it up."

That's how JD, now a Colorado Connections Academy eighth-grader, joined one of the fastest-growing student categories: online scholar.

As the number of online students grows, state data indicate the number of home-schooled students is dropping, and some parents and educators see a link between the two.

They complain about the dorm food all the time

Still, they pack it on.  From the Chattanooga timesfreepress.com.

Freshman 15 no urban myth, dietitians say
Disregard it at your own peril, college-bound seniors. The Freshman 15 is no myth.

According to a 2009 study conducted by researchers in the department of nutrition and food sciences at Utah State University, about 23 percent of college freshmen gain 5 percent of their body weight (about 10 pounds) during their first semester.

The study cites “drastic changes to environment and resources” during the transition from high school to college as leading to unhealthy behaviors, including decreased physical activity, sleeping later, higher rates of smoking and drinking, and a lower-quality diet.

Leslie Stephens, 20, a sophomore at Hiwassee College in Madisonville, Tenn., said she has tried to eat in the cafeteria as often as possible but still keeps snacks in her room and visits the student cafe. Building a meal schedule around classes can be difficult, given the cafeteria’s operating hours, Stephens said.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Higher education is still worth it

Andrew J. Rotherham answers critics to question the value of higher education, noting, among other things, that those critics probably have a college degree.  From Time.

Actually, College Is Very Much Worth It
So here's the key takeaway: Education gives you choices. Assuming you don't pile up mountains of debt that constrain your career options (and that outcome is avoidable) or go to a school where just fogging a mirror is good enough to get a diploma, there are not a lot of downsides to going to college. The stories of entrepreneurs who bootstrapped themselves are exciting but most of us are not a Gates or Zuckerberg. So before heeding the advice of the college naysayers, make sure you understand the stakes and the odds. Or, here's a good rule of thumb instead: When people who worked hard to achieve something that has benefitted them start telling you that it's really not all that important or useful — beware.

God help me I do love Top 10 lists

Top 10 Signs You're Not An Alpha Male

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Work for a public institution?

Don't drive the state car to Hooters.  From Knoxnews.com.

West TN police detective fired after Hooters visit
A Bartlett police detective has been fired after driving a city-issued vehicle to Hooters while off duty and having a beer in front of her when an inspector approached.

Jennifer Wilson, who had been with the department for about 10 years, was dismissed Friday on charges of violating administrative and city employee policies, including insubordination, improper use of a city vehicle, conduct unbecoming a city employee, carelessness in performance of duty and violating the law enforcement ethics code.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Things to do today while waiting for the rapture

I was inspired to create an Apocalypic Pop Playlist for my iPhone.  Thanks to the interweb, it wasn't that hard to come up with some.  Several, I already had.  
Eve of Destruction by Barry McGuire
99 Luftballons by Nena
The Final Countdown by Europe
It's the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine) by R.E.M.
Gimme Shelter by The Rolling Stones
1999 by Prince
All Along the Watchtower by Jimi Hendrix
In the Year 2525 by Zager & Evans
Diamond Dogs by David Bowie
Bad Moon Rising by Creedence Clearwater Revival
London Calling by The Clash
 A good start, I think.  Let me know what I'm missing.

God help me I do love Top 10 lists

Top 10 End of the World Prophecies

Friday, May 20, 2011

Continuing education job openings

The recession is over, and colleges and universities are hiring.  Here are some continuing education jobs from the Chronicle of Higher Education and HigherEdJobs.com, including one that is with the program at WIU that started me on my career in continuing higher education.
The College of St. Scholastica: Campus Director, Extended Studies, St. Paul
Santa Barbara City College: Director, Continuing Education
Morehead State University: Coordinator
Rockingham Community College: Dean of Continuing Education

Wake me up

Before I go, go.  It turns out I live in the sixth most sleep-deprived city (actually, urban area) in the country.  And the top most sleep-deprived in Tennessee.  Nashville is 17th, Knoxville 25th.  They must be sleeping late in Memphis, what with the flood and all. From The Daily Beast.

30 Most Sleep-Deprived Cities
Tri-Cities, TN-VA
Population: 628,518
Experienced insomnia in the last year: 9.0%
Experienced severe insomnia in the last year: 2.3%
Used headache/pain relievers for sleeplessness: 7.61%
Used non-prescription drugs for insomnia: 1.8%
Used prescription drugs for insomnia: 3.3%

If this is our last weekend

Here are some songs from Paste to say goodbye with. And, of course, it includes Loverboy's Working for the Weekend...

30 Great Weekend Songs

Thursday, May 19, 2011

RIP Indiana University continuing studies

Let me be the first to predict: when the programs are moved to other divisions at IU, they will slowly starve to death.  They won't be core functions, so their resources will diminish.  And no full-time staff are losing a job?  How much money could that truly save? In a few years, a new administration will wonder why IU isn't serving adult students.  Is this fallout from the state outsourcing online programs to Western Governor's University?  From the Indystar.com.

IU plans to end continuing studies program
Indiana University is seeking to cut $4 million by closing its 36-year-old School of Continuing Studies, which serves 4,000 mostly nontraditional undergraduate students with evening and online courses.

The gradual closing of the school will be completed by June 30, 2012, IU President Michael A. McRobbie said Wednesday.

The school, primarily in Bloomington, has other locations and online course offerings, as well as night courses.

Mounting budgetary restrictions and the state's desire to limit tuition increases led to the drastic measure, according to a news release.

No employees will lose their jobs, said IU spokesman Larry MacIntyre.

"The majority of these courses are developed and taught by adjunct faculty, which means they are not full-time employees."

The university will save money that would have been paid to those adjunct instructors, who often are hired on a contract basis, he said.

Degrees and diplomas offered by continuing studies, including a bachelor's of general studies, will be transitioned to other schools on IU campuses. Students enrolled in these degree programs also will be transitioned.

In case you're still around on May 22

As you may have heard, some think the world as we know it will end on May 21.  So should you party like it's 1999?  Well, I'm always up for a party but I wouldn't go overboard. And I wouldn't stop recruiting adult students for fall semester.  If you're in business, BNET has some tips to profit from the rapture.

Your Guide to the Rapture, a Compelling Business Opportunity
A Christian radio host named Harold Camping has predicted the Rapture for this Saturday. The popularity probably says more about the popular mood than it does about Christianity or Camping. This is the second end to the world he has predicted. The last one was in 1994. While Camping bases his forecast on an algorithm involving dates in the Bible, more secular types have also noted that Saturday is the day after Oprah’s last show.

There are two key problems with the Rapture as a business opportunity: Namely, that the most devoted customers are looking forward to it, and also presumably won’t be around for repeat sales. No worries. Mammon has ways around the lack of God.

Mark my words

Some tips on speaking confidently and wisely.  From Real Simple.

What Not to Say in the Workplace 18 Common Phrases to Avoid in Conversation
Don’t say: “This might sound stupid, but…”
Why: Never undermine your ideas by prefacing your remarks with wishy-washy language.
Instead say: What’s on your mind. It reinforces your credibility to present your ideas with confidence.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Instructional technology

Just goes to show you the value of immediate feedback.  From The Detroit News.

Study: It's not teacher, but method that matters
A study by a Nobel Prize-winning physicist — now a science adviser to President Barack Obama — suggests that how you teach is more important than who does the teaching.

He found that in nearly identical classes, Canadian college students learned more from teaching assistants using interactive tools than from a veteran professor giving a traditional lecture. The students who had to engage interactively using the TV remote-like devices scored about twice as high on a test compared with those who heard the normal lecture, according to a study published Thursday in the journal Science.

The interactive method had almost no lecturing. It involved short, small-group discussions, in-class "clicker" quizzes, demonstrations and question-and-answer sessions. The teachers got real-time graphic feedback on what the students were learning and what they weren't getting.

"It's really what's going on in the students' minds rather than who is instructing them," said lead researcher Carl Wieman of the University of British Columbia, who shared a Nobel physics prize in 2001. "This is clearly more effective learning. Everybody should be doing this. ... You're practicing bad teaching if you are not doing this."

Health food 101

Everything bad is good again.  Tips on healthy eating and drinking from Time Barribeau in io9.
Want to stay healthy and cancer-free? Have some coffee, chocolate, and wine.
It seems like many of our vices are turning out to have healthy side effects. We already know that chocolate is helpful for circulation, reduces the risk of heart disease, is a cough suppressant, and can keep your brain working as you age (and may be a treatment for HPV). Red wine is one of the most potent antioxidants available, beating out many commercial drugs, and may even prevent blindness.

Now, new research has shown that coffee may join chocolate and wine to form a perfect trinity of healthy deliciousness. In a Swedish study published in Breast Cancer Research, heavy coffee drinkers were found to have statistically significant lower rates of breast cancer.

The study included 6,000 women, comparing non-coffee drinkers to those who downed more than five cups a day. Once they adjusted for other influencing factors (like age at menopause, exercise, weight, education, and a family history of breast cancer) there was a statistically significant drop in breast cancer rates for the coffee swillers.

Unfortunately, this doesn't work for all forms of breast cancer. The results showed that the women who downed five or more cups were 57% less likely get estrogen-receptor-negative breast cancer and 33% the progesterone-receptor-negative variant type — types which generally have a worse prognosis than the positive versions.

Chocolate, wine and coffee. Could be worse.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Outsourcing prior learning evaluation

I hate it when, like this Chronicle of Higher Education article does, prior learning credit is referred to as "credit for life experience."  It misrepresents the process. Credit should be awarded only for learning--not for experience.  I've worked on and off with CAEL for years, and I support credit for prior learning but this new service--Learning Counts--troubles me.  I feel strongly that a student should request credit for college level learning that equates to specific courses at the student's institution.  And I believe that the institution's faculty should be the ones evaluating the student's portfolio of learning experiences.  Furthermore, I believe prior learning is most appropriate for lower-division credit since theory is often integral to upper-division courses and theory is often ignored in training and other noncollegiate learning activities.  That said, all the problems with the process outlined in the following article exist...

Will Work for Credit - Faculty - The Chronicle of Higher Education
Show, Don't Tell

One of the Learning Counts pilot institutions is Saint Leo University, in Florida. That institution had a longstanding program for awarding credit for experiential learning. But its president, Arthur F. Kirk Jr., says the new national system should be much more efficient and transparent.

"Evaluating portfolios is labor-intensive and time-consuming," Mr. Kirk says. "Part of our challenge had been that students were receiving ad hoc training in creating their portfolios, and so were the faculty evaluators. Having a more efficient external system just made all the sense in the world to me."

Clint VanWinkle, a senior at Saint Leo, is a student in the first cohort of Learning Counts. He fits the classic profile for these new programs: He completed more than 60 hours of college coursework two decades ago, then left to pursue a career in information technology. He decided to finally complete a bachelor's degree in computer science, he says, because more employers seem to be demanding it.

But he did not want to retake courses whose content he had already mastered. So this spring, he signed up for the Learning Counts course and created a 38-page portfolio that attempts to express his mastery of networking and database architecture. If the portfolio is approved, he might be awarded as many as six computer-science credits by Saint Leo. (He submitted the portfolio two weeks ago and expects to hear the verdict within days from now.)

The portfolio process, Mr. VanWinkle says, was as challenging as any other academic experience he had this year. He was not permitted simply to assert that he had learned certain skills. "I had to describe specific work projects that matched each of the learning objectives on the syllabi of these courses," he says.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Today is

The 45th Anniversary of the release of the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds.  From Max Blau, writing in Paste.

On this day 45 years ago, The Beach Boys released Pet Sounds—an album that not only emerged as their finest work, but also prevailed as a masterpiece influencing a countless acts to follow. The record, widely considered to be Brian Wilson’s magnum opus as a songwriter, marked the band’s transition from surf-rock icons to experimental musical innovators. While the record initially netted substandard album sales for a band who regularly topped the Billboard charts, Pet Sounds later defined the better portion of the band’s ultimate legacy.

At one point, Pet Sounds was even considered as America’s response to The Beatles’ sonic exploration with their transitional albums Rubber Soul and Revolver. While Wilson and the rest of The Beach Boys never matched the stretch maintained by their British counterparts, they still reached a level of success topped by few others to this day. To celebrate the anniversary of The Beach Boys’ greatest record, we present our picks for the band’s best songs.

Summer Breeze

Colleges in Tennessee realize that unused capacity in the summer could be used to help students graduate sooner.  ETSU has valued summer for some time now, employing an entrepreneurial model that has seen summer enrollments grow for the past few years.  To help grow summer programs, the legislature may allow HOPE funds to be used year round.  From The Tennessean.

It’s summertime, and the campuses of Tennessee’s colleges and universities are emptying out.

In Knoxville, campus population drops from a bustling 27,000-plus to a sleepy 5,700. In Murfreesboro, Middle Tennessee State University goes from a student body of 25,000 or so to around 8,600.

Summer semester means a lot of empty buildings on campus, and a lot of empty space in students’ academic calendars.

“We have a really underutilized campus in the summer,” said Debra Sells, vice president for student affairs at MTSU. “The feedback we get from our students is that they want to take summer courses.”

Hoping to fill that space, and speed more students toward graduation day, the Tennessee legislature is debating a bill this week that would allow students to use their HOPE lottery scholarships for summer school tuition, while colleges and universities move independently to beef up their summer school offerings.

Racism chased her out more than fifty years ago

But she finally gets her degree.  Tamar Lewin tells the story of Burlyce Logan in the New York Times.

A College Degree, 55 Years in the Making
As she prepares for her commencement at the University of North Texas here on Saturday, Burlyce Sherrell Logan can still hear the words the institution’s president spoke at her freshman welcoming ceremony.

“ ‘There are some people here — you know who you are — that we don’t want here, but the state says can be here,’ ” she recalled the president telling the class of 2,155, clearly referring to her and the dozen other African-Americans among them. “He said we couldn’t eat in the cafeteria, we couldn’t live on campus. They set up a little area, with a little television, for us to be in when we weren’t in class.”

That was in 1956. What followed were two brutal years in which, Ms. Logan said, people threw rocks at her, pushed her in front of a moving car and burned a cross on the lawn of the house where she and five others boarded.

“One day I was walking across campus, going to another building, and I saw a bunch of placards out,” she said. “I thought someone was going for office.” She recalled that she started reading the signs and they said, “ ‘Jungle bunnies go home,’ ‘Africans go home,’ ‘Burrheads go home.’ And I was totally shocked, but I had noticed there were a bunch of kids ganging up behind me. And I don’t know what made me do this, but I just started knee-slapping laughing, and I couldn’t stop. I think they think I went crazy, and they all ran away.”

Friday, May 13, 2011

From the Urban Dictionary

Powerpuff Presentation:  A powerpoint presentation containing lots of flashy animations, cool pictures, and all sorts of other snazzy gimmics, but almost entirely lacking in any real substance.

Didn't the VP's presentation just blow you away? I loved the falling apples turning into dollar bills.

But what was the point?

Dunno; it was definitely a powerpuff presentation.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Outside the box

Tim Copeland reveals some interesting marketing ideas that you've probably never considered.

College Advertising Everywhere! Getting the Word Out in Non-Traditional Ways
Colleges and universities continue to ramp up their efforts to get the word out. While many rushed to social spaces such as Facebook and Twitter, others are leveraging offline media to accomplish their enrollment marketing objectives. Within the last six months of my travel, I've picked up some interesting examples of colleges using airports ... and the New York Yankees.

A Tennessee icon freshens up

Goo Goo Clusters.  I can't count how many times I've brought some of these to conferences as a gift from Tennessee.  Not as impressive as Jack Daniels but still...From The Tennessean.

Goo Goo gets a makeover
Sitting in the Oak Bar of The Hermitage Hotel — one of the few Nashville institutions around longer than the 99-year-old Goo Goo Cluster — Jimmy Spradley told a story about the candy bar brand his family oversees. When he speaks to Vanderbilt University business classes, he often asks students if they’ve heard of a Goo Goo Cluster.

Hands fly up.

But when the 29-year-veteran of the business asks who has eaten one lately, it’s as if he’s challenged them to fix the nation’s deficit.

Hardly any hands at all.

The Goo Goo Cluster, that mound of chocolate-covered marshmallow, caramel and nuts, is like the Patsy Cline of candy bars, a true Nashville star and icon in Southern culture. Purported to be the first candy bar ever to incorporate multiple ingredients, the Goo Goo has been a fixture as a sponsor on the Grand Ole Opry, been noted in films such as Robert Altman’s Nashville and even been an answer on Jeopardy! But it doesn’t take a Vandy MBA to know that a candy often heard about — but rarely eaten — hardly does a business good.

Two days and counting

To the deadline for AAACE Conference Proposals.

Adult Learning for Our Complex World
60th Annual AAACE International Adult & Continuing Education Conference
In partnership with
Adult Higher Education Alliance Annual Conference
Indianapolis, Indiana
30 October - 4 November 2011

The Call for Proposals for the 60th Annual AAACE International Conference AND the Call for Papers for the International Adult Education Pre-conference are posted. Check out this information at the Conference 2011 tab on the AAACE home page.

And in honor of Eat What You Want Day

Enjoy this slide show of Southern comfort food from The Tennessean.  Mmmmm, fried pickles...

Southern guilty pleasure foods

Fried Pickles: The fried pickle is a reminder that in the South, we'll fry just about anything. But there's something about that tart-fat combination that gets pleasure sensors in the brain buzzing. Try them at PM on Belmont Avenue, Blue Moon Lagoon at Rock Harbor Marina and Otter's Chicken Tenders (multiple locations).

Today is

Eat What You Want Day is definitely not a day for diets. It is one single, solitary day in the year to go off your diet and eat something you really enjoy, Today, you can set aside your dietary "No-No" list. Today, you can splurge. Tomorrow, it's back to the diet. It is important to note that today is not intended to eat as much as you want. Rather, the goal is to eat something you otherwise wouldn't have. If you are watching carbs or calories, simply keep within your limits by eating just a small amount of that favorite treat.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Where to find your students

Advertising Age lists five "surprising" facts from the Census.  Although aimed for marketers, they are useful for educators as well.

Census 2010: Five Surprising Facts Marketers Should Know News

1. There are 1.2 million fewer children in the Northeast and Midwest than there were in 2000.
2. Minority populations grew eight times faster than the majority white, non-Hispanic population.
3. Hispanics are more highly concentrated than the headline about their rapid nationwide growth would suggest.
4. The Asian population is the fastest-growing racial or ethnic group in the U.S., but it is even more highly concentrated than the Hispanic population.
5. Among the 37.7 million African-Americans counted in the 2010 Census, many are moving to the suburbs and back to the South.

We have many students who graduate and have never been on our campus

But they're typically adults.  Not sixteen-year olds.  Too bad her goal is to become a lawyer. From The Seattle Times.

Not only will 16-year-old Kayla Heard be the youngest Washington State University graduate on record at Saturday's commencement, but she earned her bachelor's degree without ever visiting campus.

"That's rare," said Randy Spaulding, remarking on both details. Spaulding, academic-affairs director for the Washington Higher Education Coordinating Board, said, "I think the fact that she never had to step foot on campus is a little unusual, but we will see more and more of that."

Heard, of Union, Mason County, started reading before age 2, graduated from high school at 10, earned her associate of arts degree at 13 and now a bachelor's. The teenager has already passed her law-school admissions test and plans to earn a law degree online

Monday, May 9, 2011

San Jose State commencement speaker Steve Lopez nails it

Emphasis mine.

Higher education should remain a commitment in state budget
UCLA Chancellor Gene Block recently wrote in The Times that of the 42 Republicans in our state Legislature, 29 are products of California's public system of higher education. They got a great bargain, but not a single one of them has supported a Brown proposal — balance the budget half with cuts and half with a temporary extension of existing tax increases — that would maintain a barely acceptable level of quality in the Cal State system and help students avoid crippling tuition hikes.

Our priorities are out of whack, state tax structure has been screwed up since Proposition 13, and a disengaged public wakes up only often enough to make things worse with ballot initiatives. As wealth becomes all the more concentrated at the top, we need more than ever a state university system that can help balance the playing field.

Graduate school explained

From I Love Charts

Saturday, May 7, 2011

In honor of the Kentucky Derby, an answer to

The question we're all asking ourselves.  From Slate.

Does a Racehorse Pee Like a Racehorse?
Wait, how much does a racehorse pee?

A lot. Horses typically produce several quarts of urine every four hours, for a total of about 1.5 to 2 gallons per day. (By contrast, an adult male human pees 1 or 2 quarts per day.) The stream, usually one-third to a half-inch in diameter, can last up to 30 seconds. In general, the larger the animal, the more it pees. A Clydesdale, for example, weighs twice as much as a Thoroughbred and produces urine in greater volume (and with a more pungent smell). An average pasture horse that spends its day grazing might also beat a racehorse in a peeing match: Pasture grass contains a lot more water than the carefully prepared grains and pellets fed to racehorses.

Friday, May 6, 2011

CDS Graduation Reception

I guess there's something to all those reflections

We have students write in graduate school.  By Sanjoy Mahajan, writing in Freakonomics.com.

Deliberate Practice: How Education Fails to Produce Expertise
Thanks to recent, hugely popular books about the development of expertise, the term deliberate practice is coming into common usage as the kind of practice that produces expertise.

Deliberate practice requires careful reflection on what worked and what didn’t work. A budding concert pianist may practice a particularly troublesome passage listening for places where his fingers do not flow smoothly. A chess student may spend hours analyzing one move of a world-championship chess match trying to see what the grandmasters saw. This kind of practice demands time for reflection and intense concentration, so intense that it is difficult to sustain for longer than 3 hours per day.

Continuing education job openings

The recession is over, and colleges and universities are hiring.  Here are some continuing education jobs from the Chronicle of Higher Education and HigherEdJobs.com.
University of Wisconsin CollegesTwo Campus Executive Officers/Deans
The School of the Art Institute of ChicagoDean of Continuing Studies
University of New Mexico Valencia CampusDean/Chief Academic Officer
Marlboro College:  Director of Non-Degree Programs
Finger Lakes Community College: Campus Center Administrator - Victor
Ball State UniversityDean, School of Extended Education
Metropolitan Community CollegeDean, Sarpy County Centers
University of South Carolina - UnionDean of the Campus
Contra Costa Community College DistrictDean of Workforce, Economic Development and Grants

Triton College: Dean of Adult Education

I've been known to use this joke

Occasionally. First there was Watson, winning Jeopardy. Now there is a robot comedian. Cue the Terminator....From Katy Waldman, writing in Slate.

[Subject] Could Eat [Object] All Day. That’s What She Said.
If you have a shaky sense of comic timing (and you're a little immature), there's good news from the University of Washington. As the New Scientist's One Per Cent blog reported on Friday, researchers have developed a computer program that helps you identify the perfect opening for a "that's what she said" joke.

Computer scientists Chloé Kiddon and Yuriy Brun are interested in how humans recognize double entendres—and whether machines can learn to do the same. Spotting double entendres requires "both deep semantic and cultural understanding," they write (PDF). As Kiddon explained in an interview, a double entendre is really a type of metaphor that brings together two conceptual realms: one straight-laced and one raunchy. So "that's what she said" jokes aren't just crude, cheap ways to get a laugh-they're also fertile testing ground for whether computers can be trained to "think" metaphorically about language, the way humans do.

Kiddon and Brun define a TWSS as a sentence that is funny when followed by the phrase "That's what she said." Telltale TWSS markers include 1) the presence of nouns that are often euphemisms for more sexually suggestive nouns and 2) syntactical structures common to X-rated literature. The researchers give banana as one example of a seemingly respectable noun that could moonlight in porn writing. For racy syntax, they offer "[subject] stuck [object] in" and "[subject] could eat [object] all day."

To train their computer program, DEviaNT (Double Entendre via Noun Transfer), which assesses the TWSS potential of individual statements, Kiddon and Brun gathered 1.5 million sentences from erotic literature and 57,000 from more mainstream texts, such as Barry Goldwater's 1961 essay "A Foreign Policy for America" (which is just chock-full of euphemistic eroticism, we're sure). By analyzing big swathes of lexical content, DEviaNT began to learn which terms frequently appear together in risqué contexts—thus indicating a potential TWSS—and which tend to cluster in more decorous settings. The program then honed its skills on 2,000 sentences from twssstories.com, an online forum for "That's what she said" jokes; more practice came courtesy of fmylife.com, textsfromlastnight.com, and wikiquotes.

I may have mentioned something earlier about liking my iPhone

But even I haven't found the need to use it in the bathtub...

Face-mounted nose stylus for phones is not to be sniffed at
Designer Dominic Wilcox has come up with a Pinocchio-style "finger-nose stylus" that lets you navigate your touchscreen phone hands-free.

He came up with the design after he found that he wanted to use his touchphone in the bath. A wet hand is not a good touchscreen navigation device, so he found himself using his nose to scroll, but found it hard to see precisely where his nose was touching the screen.

The solution was to create a nose extension "finger" that would allow for navigation while holding the phone firmly in his one dry hand (he did not want to risk scrolling and holding with the same hand for fear of dropping the phone).

The stylus comprises a capacitive end point attached to a plaster nose measuring around five inches in length and affixed to the face with elastic. The elongated nose allows the user to navigate around the screen with accuracy.

In Wilcox's inaugural nose-tweet from the bath he wanted to type "Hello I am tweeting with my nose", but due to the phone's auto-correct it came out as "hello I am meeting with my nose". Apparently this caused him to lose two Twitter followers.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

God help me I do love Top 10 lists

Top 10 Novels Set At College

ETSU Renaissance and other summer camps

East Tennessee State University’s Office of Professional Development will, once again, offer interesting and educational summer camps for children and teens.

The Renaissance Child Camp for children ages 6-10 and Renaissance Challenge Camp for ages 11-13 provide age-appropriate science, math and computer projects, arts and crafts, creative writing and various daily physical activities, including swimming at the Wayne G. Basler Center for Physical Activity. The available dates for Renaissance Child Camps are June 6-10, June 20-24 and July 11-15, while Renaissance Challenge Camp will be held June 13-17.

Computer Camp for Teens, held June 6-10, welcomes those ages 12-15 with an interest in various types of computer activities. This year’s camp will focus on 2-D animation.

Art, Music, and Drama Camp, held June 20-July 1, provides a two-week course in scriptwriting, set production, choreography and costume design for ages 10-16. Christine Waxstein, costume director for ETSU’s Theatre Department, will lead the class. The fee for this two-week camp is $250, or $240 when registering for more than one camp, with a reduced cost of $235 for ETSU faculty, staff and students.

Digital Media Camp, offered the week of July 11-15 at ETSU’s Niswonger Digital Media Laboratory, will allow rising high school sophomores, juniors and seniors an opportunity to study 2-D and 3-D animation and to create a project to display for parents and friends on Friday evening. Participants should have some digital media experience and should submit a recommendation letter from an art or computer teacher. The fee for this camp is $375 or $360 for ETSU faculty, staff and students.

Science and Forensics Camp, offered July 18-22, is designed for those ages 12-15 who have an interest in science and criminology. Participants will perform numerous science experiments, many with a forensic focus. Another activity will be a visit from law enforcement personnel.

A new Innovation Station camp for ages 6-12 will allow campers to use science, math, engineering and computer skills to create an original invention and to create a prototype using recycled materials. Daily physical activities, including swimming, are part of the camp, which meets July 25-29.

All camps meet from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and all one-week camps except Digital Media Camp cost $180 per week, or $170 when registering siblings or for more than one camp. The ETSU community receives a discounted fee of $165.

For registration or further information, visit the Web site at www.etsu.edu/renaissancechild or contact Angela Bayard of the ETSU Office of Professional Development at (423) 439-8084 or bayarda@etsu.edu.

And go here to see how Music City is celebrating Cinco de Mayo.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Turning a bankrupt private college

Into a public branch campus.  While I think this is probably a good investment overall, you do have to question its priority in light of budget reductions in higher education across the state.  It does create jobs for continuing educators, however.  From The Commercial Appeal.

Gov. Bill Haslam is asking lawmakers to approve $5 million for the first year of operations of Lambuth University's campus in Jackson as a branch of the University of Memphis.

The financially troubled Methodist-affiliated university announced last month that it is ceasing operations. Its last graduating class received its degrees last weekend.

But the arrangement is largely contingent, administration officials told state legislators Tuesday, on Jackson and Madison County officials and community leaders raising $15 million to $19 million to pay off Lambuth's debt of approximately $10 million and to pay for $5 million to $9 million in repairs and maintenance needs at the campus.

The governor's finance and administration commissioner, Mark Emkes, outlined the plan to the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday as part of the Haslam administration's final budget amendment plan to the legislature. It results in weeks of behind-the-scenes talks among U of M administrators, community leaders and the Haslam administration.

If the plan works out, the University of Memphis hopes to enroll at least 300 students on the Lambuth campus. It would be operated as a branch of the university in August for the fall semester with an emphasis on nursing, business and teacher-education classes, according to Kevin F. Roper, executive assistant to the U of M president for government relations and public policy.

God help me I do love Top 10 lists

Unfortunately for my single friends, all Tennessee cities are absent from the list.

Top 10 Cities for Single Men

Cutting off your nose

In a move that may keep students from making timely progress towards their degrees, a community college district guts summer classes.  Perhaps they should consider letting continuing education run their summer programs in an entrepreneurial model.  I know California is a low-tuition state, but summer school can generate revenue. From SignonSanDiego.com.

College district cutting summer classes
The San Diego Community College District, citing massive state cuts to higher education, said it will dramatically reduce summer class offerings down to minimum levels.

In a letter Friday to current and prospective students, Chancellor Constance Carroll, board President Richard Grosch and the presidents of City, Mesa and Miramar colleges said they were deeply disappointed by the decision.

“The only courses we will be offering will be those to honor specific commitments, including specialized allied health programs and pending summer graduates,” they said in the letter. “Therefore, we will not be producing a summer schedule or issuing registration appointments.”

In an interview Saturday, Carroll said the district will preserve classes for year round programs, such as nursing or paralegal studies. "We will make sure that those will be offered," she said.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

This is why we got into continuing higher education in the first place

As graduation time rolls around, we start reading more stories about adult and other non-traditional students and their journey through higher education.  Down the road in Knoxville, Older Non-Trad Student is getting ready for commencement from UT-Knoxville.  She has blogged about her experiences for some time now. OregonLive.com has the following story:

As Oregon begins the college graduation season, nontraditional students take a bow
Jennifer Brown cuddles deep under a comforter in the back seat when a pickup backs up next to her car in the empty lot and awakens her. It's 3:30 a.m. A man in his late 30s with dark blond hair gets out of the truck and stands by the hood, just a few feet away. After a minute, he gets back in his truck. Then out again.

She'd been sleeping in her 1994 Chevy Cavalier the four months since she left her boyfriend. She parks in the Shari's Restaurant lot in Clackamas because it stays open all night, and she can use the restroom.

She's 19, jobless, a Clackamas High School dropout living out her parent's expectations as the family black sheep, the slacker, the loser. Going back home isn't an option. Neither is staying here with this creep around in the depths of winter.

She slips behind the wheel and drives to her ex-boyfriend's. They're on good terms, and he lets her stay. In fact, he insists after they hear the news the next morning. The man in the truck raped a woman in the same parking lot after Brown left.

That was the last night Brown, who then went by her maiden name Marsh, slept in her car. And it was the beginning of a 10-year journey to California, marriage, community college and the University of Portland, where she picks up her bachelor's in business administration May 8. In fall, she's off to the University of Southern California to become an accountant

Monday, May 2, 2011

Drill, professor, drill

Could the solution to higher education funding be right under our no--uhhh, feet?" From the postgazette.com.

Corbett tells universities to consider shale drilling
Some state universities should consider drilling for natural gas below campus to help solve their financial problems, Gov. Tom Corbett said Thursday.

Mr. Corbett made the suggestion during an appearance at a meeting of the Pennsylvania Association of Councils of Trustees at Edinboro University.

Mr. Corbett said six of the 14 campuses in the State System of Higher Education are located on the Marcellus Shale formation, part of a vast region of underground natural gas deposits that are being explored and extracted.

The Republican governor's proposed budget for the fiscal year that starts in July would cut $2 billion from education and reduce aid to colleges and universities by 50 percent.

Austin Peay taking student success seriously

Using software to recommend classes.  Tracking students by location.  APSU is doing some interesting stuff.  From Jennifer Brooks writing in The Tennessean.

APSU goes high-tech to lift graduation rates

Sometime in the near future, students at Austin Peay State University might start getting some smart advice from their smartphones.

“I noticed you’re still in your dorm room,” a university-generated reminder might pop up for students who opt in for this still-under-development app. “Don’t you have chemistry right now?”

Austin Peay President Timothy Hall estimates the university is at least a year away from being able to tap into the GPS chip in students’ phones for that particular program. It’s part of a wave of high-tech attempts to get higher graduation rates.

Closed out of a class? Push a button on the school’s home page for help.

Not sure which classes to take? Austin Peay just rolled out advising software that makes Netflix-style course recommendations — and predicts the grade the student probably will earn in each class.

Hall outlined the Clarksville university’s initiatives in a presentation before the Tennessee Higher Education Commission on Thursday. All are part of the ongoing campaign to get students into the classroom and keep them there until they graduate.

Every public college and university in Tennessee is under intense pressure to improve graduation rates. State lawmakers, sick of seeing Tennessee at the bottom of national higher ed rankings, have begun cutting funding to universities whose students do not graduate within six years, and to community colleges who do not graduate their students within three years.

“A generation ago, universities genuinely believed that the center of the academic universe was the professor teaching,” Hall said during his report to the state’s higher education governing system. “Now we realize, no, that’s not right. The center of the academic universe is the student, learning.”