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Higher Ed

Higher Ed news roundup

By and
Senior Staff Writers
Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Smith College loco about locavores

A rumor that Smith College’s dining services would begin serving only vegetarian and locally grown options had the campus in an uproar last week, the Boston Globe reported. Students railed against the dining services manager, chalked graffiti onto sidewalks and participated in both protests and counter-protests. But the rumor was false — it was hatched by two logic professors as a way to teach rhetoric and argument to their classes.

The professors, Jay Garfield and Jim Henle, assigned half of their students to convince the campus that the rumor was true and the other half to argue against the rumor.

“We’re just brilliant and slightly weird,” Garfield told the Globe.

 

New York City seeks high-tech edge

Roosevelt Island in New York City may soon see a satellite campus for Cornell or Stanford University. The city will open 10 acres of land for the development of a graduate school of applied sciences, according to the New York Times. Though Columbia, New York University and many other schools have submitted expansion proposals, Cornell and Stanford are the top contenders due to their reputations as leaders in science and technology, the Times reported.

New York City lacks competitive engineering students for employers to recruit, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education. A graduate school for applied sciences could “turn New York into the world’s next great high-tech hub,” according to the Times.

 

UNM orders (Un)Occupy out

The University of New Mexico told (Un)Occupy Albuquerque protesters Monday to leave the park where they have camped for four weeks. The request followed the arrest of a man who threatened protesters with a knife.

(Un)Occupy takes its name in response to “negative connotations of the word occupy in a city with a large Native American population,” according to KOB-TV.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the movement had not decided whether it will comply with orders to leave by Tuesday night, according to KOB-TV. The university said it was concerned with the heightened homeless population and increasingly dangerous conditions in the park, according to the Huffington Post. Protesters maintained it is “the capitalist system in this country that has brought” the conditions, not the protesters, the Huffington Post reports.

 

College newspapers build pay walls

Two organizations have offered to cover the start-up costs for college newspapers looking to establish digital pay walls. Press+, a digital-subscription company, and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation will sponsor the first 50 newspapers that apply, according to an article from the Chronicle of Higher Education.

The effort follows those made by national and local newspapers, including the New York Times and the Providence Journal, which have recently added pay walls to their websites. Participating newspapers can choose to charge readers for access to articles or collect donations on a voluntary basis, according to the Chronicle.

Oklahoma State University’s Daily O’Collegian became the first campus publication to experiment with a pay wall when it began charging non-local, regular readers for access in January, the Chronicle reports. Syracuse, Boston and Tufts universities are among the other colleges whose campus newspapers are participating in the Press+ pay wall program, according to paidContent.

 

University of California nixes SAT subject tests

The University of California system is no longer requiring SAT subject tests as part of its undergraduate application process. According to the Los Angeles Times, the change is intended to reduce stress caused by the application process and expand the range of students who can apply. But some students and college counselors are confused as to how to respond.

The university system says poor or absent scores will not hurt a student’s chances of admission, according to the Times. But UC officials told the Times that high scores will be seen as a “plus factor,” similar to how extracurricular activities are viewed. This has made some students believe that taking the tests and scoring well will increase their chances of admission.

Alan Radoncic told the University of Southern California’s Annenberg TV News that he will be taking the tests, as he also plans to apply to schools that require the subject exams. “The subject tests are designed to gauge one’s ability in that certain subject, making the process more selective,” he told the Annenberg TV News. “But now this is raising the bar competition-wise for all of us.”

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