Wesleyan scales back need-blind admissions policy
Wesleyan University is one of several institutions reducing their need-blind admissions policies for specific applicant groups, the Hartford Courant reported.
While students and alums have expressed concern that the changes will diminish Wesleyan's diversity, President Michael Roth said the changes would affect few applicants, according to the Courant. He added that the policy change is a better alternative than continued layoffs and spending cuts that would otherwise be required. The school's endowment took a hit in the 2008 financial crisis, prompting cuts in spending and increases in tuition.
College enrollment falls for first time in over a decade
National collegiate enrollment dropped in fall 2011 compared to the previous year, according to data released this week by the National Center for Education Statistics. This marks the first time yearly enrollment decreased since 1996.
Though the decrease amounted to less than 1 percent of enrollment, it represents an end to the boom in higher education that began during the recession of the late 2000s, according to Inside Higher Ed. An improved job market and increases in tuition may have been driving forces behind the dip in enrollment. In addition, first-year enrollment in graduate programs fell this year by 1.7 percent despite a 4.3 percent increase in applications, according to a report from the Council of Graduate Students.
Former student files lawsuit against Wesleyan
A former Wesleyan student filed charges against the school, claiming she was raped in fall 2010 at a fraternity infamously known on campus as the "Rape Factory." The lawsuit argues the administration failed to warn students about their safety at the fraternity, whose reputation cost it its recognition as a student organization in 2005. The university sent an email warning students that it "could not ensure students' safety on the premises" in March 2010.
The woman, who has since transferred, was a freshman in the fall of 2010 and did not know about the warning before she was allegedly assaulted at a Halloween party by a guest of the fraternity, who is now serving a 15-month prison sentence. The charges also faulted the administration for neglecting to support the student when she was harassed by fraternity members, the Hartford Courant reported. Her report of the incident led the university to briefly revoke the fraternity's program housing status until protests pressured its reinstatement.