Showing posts from April, 2015

Iowa's three-year degrees

These degrees aren't accelerated, like you might think. Instead, students are required to carry a heavier load and work harder and more efficiently.  Year round.  It's hard to understand why most programs couldn't be completed in three years under those conditions. From The Gazette.

UI names majors open to three-year degrees
UI President Mason in the fall announced plans to begin offering three-year bachelor’s degrees in fall 2015, and on Thursday she specified the majors available under the “Iowa Degree in Three” program.  Students majoring in communication studies, English, history, international studies, marketing, and theatre arts will have the option of pursuing a degree in the shortened time frame. After enrolling in the program and beginning classes, interested students will meet with advisers, establish “checkpoints” through their colleges and departments, and outline other requirements to keep them on track.  The three-year options require the same number credits a…

College pays

College is still a good investment, according to The Atlantic.
Even With Debt, College Still Pays Off Widespread unemployment among recent college graduates during, and following, the recession combined with climbing student-loan debt, has left many wondering whether or not a college education is a good or necessary investment after all.  In economic terms, the answer is still yes.

Though the cost of college is increasing, a variety of empirical evidence suggests that the earnings associated with a bachelor's degree still trump the debt that students incur in most cases. According to data from the New York Fed, college graduates earn 80 percent more than their peers who didn’t attend, or didn’t finish, undergrad—and they’re also less likely to wind up unemployed than those who didn't go to college.

Good riddence

One reason higher education is expensive is because of for-profits like Corinthian. Their students suffer tremendous debt for dubious degrees. From MainST.
Corinthian Colleges Shuts Down its Remaining Campuses as its Final Act
Corinthian Colleges, the embattled California-based for profit college, will shutter the last of its remaining campuses today.  Corinthian, which completed a deal in February to sell 56 of its campuses to ECMC Group, a Minnesota-based student loan debt collector, is closing its 13 remaining Everest and WyoTech campuses in California along with 12 Heald College locations in California, Hawaii and Oregon. Everest College Phoenix, Everest Online Tempe in Arizona and the Everest Institute in New York will also shut down.  Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) noted that until he learned of the shutdown on Sunday, Corinthian's remaining schools continued to receive aid from the federal government through the Title IV federal education program. Durbin remains concerned abou…

Promises, promises....

My recently-retired continuing education colleague insists that the whole concept behind Tennessee Promise started with Bill Locke and Northeast State Community College's "Educate and Grow" program.  Which in turn led to similar programs in Sevierville and Knoxville. He wants credit where credit is due, and he's probably right. From the Chronicle of Higher Education.

The Players Who Influenced Obama’s Free-College Plan
The Tennessee Promise
Tennessee was the first and most active member of Complete College America’s Alliance of States, and it readily embraced many of the solutions the group was promoting, including structured schedules and remediation overhauls. Complete College America had a hand in drafting the legislation tying state funds to graduation rates and other performance measures. "We’ve learned from each other," Mr. Jones said of its partnership with Tennessee.

Infographic Friday

Find more great infographics on NerdGraph Infographics

They'll have to pry my smartphone

From my cold, dead hand.  Addicted? I'm afraid so, but at least I don't sleep with mine.  It has to recharge, after all.  From Time.

3 Charts That Show Why We’re Addicted to Our Phones
Pew’s survey also found the 36% of U.S. adults didn’t own a smartphone, suggesting how millions of Americans, believe it or not, are getting by just fine without their Apple iPhone or Samsung Galaxy. In fact, most smartphone owners can complete tasks just fine when their phones aren’t by their sides...  But in the end, Americans probably won’t ditch their smartphones if they don’t have to. Though about half of respondents said their phones made them feel distracted, the overwhelming majority also said their phones made them feel happy and productive.

Unhealthy Appalachia

Here in Northeast Tennessee, Washington County's Mortality rate is 421.7.  From Time.
This Map Shows the Deadliest Counties in the U.S. The new edition of County Health Rankings from the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, places the county–which until very recently was called Shannon County–at the bottom of the class in the number of people who died before age 75, a common measure of public health.  Oglala Lakota County sits inside the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, whose residents suffer from a number of well-documented health problems. While South Dakota has a number of counties with high rates of premature deaths, the unhealthiest region in the United States is arguably the heart of Appalachia, from eastern Kentucky into southwest Virginia and southern West Virginia. Many of the counties have rates of smoking and obesity north of 30 percent of the population.... Across the country, the median value for this figure is 376 people per 100,000, meaning 0.38% of pop…

Timing is everything

Even in job interviews.  I always heard that you wanted to be either the first of the last person interviewed.  Turns out, even the time of the day is important. From

When is the best time to schedule a job interview?
So, what does this mean for job interviews? If possible, get your interviews scheduled first thing in the morning when people are fresher and better able to make decisions to evaluate your candidacy. If you’re interviewing later in the afternoon, know what you’re up against. At that point in the day, people are likely struggling with decision fatigue. That means you have to really bring your A-game to make sure you’re given a fair shot.
Great keynote at ACHE South!

A non-credit opportunity

And no, you can't really major in Britney Spears. Popular culture, now that's another matter or another major. But as an old English major, I can't throw stones. I enjoy popular culture studies and would certainly enjoy this course. From The Daily Beast.

Majoring in Britney Spears in Brooklyn: A Greenpoint Class Offers ‘Britney Spears 101’
They’re all here for a 90-minute presentation titled, “Britney Spears: Goddess, Feminist Icon, Pop Priestess,” a quirky but semi-serious workshop that discusses the singer’s unique role in feminism, sexuality, and pop culture. Call it nostalgic, call it crazy, but it keeps selling out.  “I think the workshop has tapped into something. I don’t know if I would have put my finger on it beforehand, but I think there’s some kind of movement going on,” said Rachel Goldberg, co-creator of the Spears workshop, which she runs out of her apartment with business partner Suri Ratnatunga.

Infographic Friday


Infographic Friday


Iowa a haven for hipsters?

Evidently, as three of the top nineteen cities can be found in the Hawkeye State.  Ames, Iowa City, and West Des Moines. None in Tennessee, unsurprisingly. Although I've spotted a few in Knoxville. From CBS Moneywatch.
Top U.S. cities for hipsters The definition of hipster is admittedly squishy -- this is not a group easily forced into stereotypes --but they are generally thought to share some characteristics. They have an "effortless nonchalance," according to FindTheHome. Their preferences cross societal lines, blending cheap beer and organic food, wordly cynicism and an aspirational idealism, recycled furniture and ultra-cool clothes.  Those are tough characteristics to measure, so FindTheHome took an easier route and looked at four attributes that it thinks hipster cities have in common:
Young people. Hipsters can be any age, of course, but they're more likely to be between 20-34.
Education. A high percentage have a bachelor's degree.
Cafes. Where else would y…

Tax Day

Click image to see a larger versionFile Cabinet Clean-Up via H&R Block

And I need to get out more at lunch

Time has some tips on things to avoid in order to improve your productivity.

10 Habits You Should Abandon Now to Improve Productivity
7. Eating lunch at your desk You may think that you’re being more productive by skipping your lunch hour, but what happens if you spill food or a drink on a key report — or your keyboard? You could ruin your productivity for the afternoon with a simple slip-up. In addition, you’re more likely to make poor food choices and overeat if you’re eating at your desk. Do your productivity a favor and get lunch away from your desk.

Nearly 2,000 ETSU students take most or all courses online

Online student enrollments at East Tennessee State University have reached a milestone, according to enrollment data provided by ETSU’s Office of eLearning. This semester, 1,046 students are taking 100 percent of their coursework online, with 900 additional students taking at least 50 percent of their coursework online.

ETSU Online offers 26 degree and certificate programs at the graduate and undergraduate levels in a completely online format. There are also several programs with most, but not all, coursework offered online. During the spring 2015 semester, which includes winter session, 639 individual online courses were offered.

As course offerings have grown, enrollment in online courses at ETSU has grown, as well – 93 percent since 2008.

“We’ve worked hard to increase the number of available online courses and programs,” says Karen King, vice provost for eLearning, “and we’ve been pleased with resulting growth in online enrollments.”

The flexibility, convenience and quality of ETS…

Infographic Fiday


Save the date

Tennessee Alliance for Continuing Higher Education 47th Annual Conference November 11-13, 2015 The Park Vista--A Doubletree Hotel by Hilton Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Growing a university

Without actually improving it.  All about the branding and lessons learned from vodka.  From The New York Times.

How to Raise a University’s Profile: Pricing and Packaging

Mr. Trachtenberg, however, understood something crucial about the modern university. It had come to inhabit a market for luxury goods. People don’t buy Gucci bags merely for their beauty and functionality. They buy them because other people will know they can afford the price of purchase. The great virtue of a luxury good, from the manufacturer’s standpoint, isn’t just that people will pay extra money for the feeling associated with a name brand. It’s that the high price is, in and of itself, a crucial part of what people are buying.

Mr. Trachtenberg convinced people that George Washington was worth a lot more money by charging a lot more money. Unlike most college presidents, he was surprisingly candid about his strategy. College is like vodka, he liked to explain. Vodka is by definition a flavorless beverage. It al…

Simplify the FAFSA

It is a chore to complete the FAFSA. The Atlantic argues that it could be easier to complete which in turn might spur college enrollment.

Why Are So Many College Students Turning Down Free Money?
The FAFSA is the first step toward receiving Pell grants. As its name implies, the application is free—and, for the low-income students who are deemed eligible, the money it generates is free, too. Unlike loans, students don't have to pay off the aid. With the maximum Pell Grant amount valued at $5,775 per student for the 2015-16 year, the FAFSA alone doesn't always make a huge dent in tuition for students, especially those attending expensive private colleges. But for many it could cover the majority of the tuition at many public two- and even four-year colleges.  The amount of paperwork required complete the application could explain why so few people complete it. Filling out the lengthy form is a laborious process—and the Department of Education doesn’t try to hide that. In fact, th…
Business Insider ranks the economies of all fifty states.  Tennessee ranks in the lower middle.

RANKED: The 50 US state economies from worst to best
32: Tennessee  Ten Fortune 500 companies have their headquarters in Tennessee. These include FedEx, the Hospital Corporation of America, International Paper, and Dollar General. Given the state's central geographic location and the presence of FedEx, many more Tennesseans work in the courier, truck-transportation, and water-transportation industries than Americans do overall.  Tennessee's housing market was recovering at a rate faster than the average, with housing prices rising 5.12% between Q3 2013 and Q3 2014. Job growth was also better than average, with a 2.39% gain in nonfarm payroll jobs between December 2013 and December 2014. That job growth, however, has not helped Tennessee's above-average unemployment rate of 6.6%.

Read more:

Infographic Friday

Infographic: stress in the workplace - An infographic by the team at Westfield Health

ETSU recognizes its adjunct faculty members

The Office of Human Resources requests your assistance in continuing to recognize our outstanding ETSU employees (faculty and staff).  We regularly feature on our Human Resources’ web site an employee or group of employees who have displayed outstanding service to the university and/or our surrounding community. These are our employees who probably would not receive local media attention but deserve acclaim for the good work they perform.

The Office of Human Resources is proud to present our latest featured employees, ETSU’s Adjunct Faculty Members.

April Fool's Day!


April Fool's Day!

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April Fools Day!

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