Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

POSTED: Tuesday, July 29, 2014, 1:35 PM

Those interested in learning German for free may want to say “Danke” to the University of Pennsylvania.

The Ivy League university is launching its first German language Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) and notes that the course is the first-ever MOOC teaching elementary German.

“Auf Deutsch: Communicating in German Across Cultures,” is a free, six-week, non-credit course that will begin Oct. 6, the university said.

POSTED: Tuesday, July 22, 2014, 7:49 PM

New Jersey continues to be the state with the largest “brain drain” of college students, according to new national data that lawmakers say is evidence of a systemic issue that needs to be addressed.

More than 30,000 New Jerseyans leave the state to attend college each year. Only California sees more residents go out of state for college, but almost as many out-of-state students choose a school in California.

In New Jersey, only a few thousand students enter the state for college.

Jonathan Lai @ 7:49 PM  Permalink | 0
POSTED: Monday, July 21, 2014, 3:17 PM
Meghan Cox, a senior at West Chester University, was part of rally in May about the school's policy on cases of sexual violence, sparked by several reports of assaults on campus. (ED HILLE / Staff Photographer)

The Inquirer asked area universities how many sexual assault cases their judicial panels have heard in the last five years and how many students were expelled for those offenses.

West Chester: In the last five years, 19 students were found “responsible” for violating the school’s sexual misconduct and harassment policy. Two of those cases went before a judicial board. The others were decided by the director of judicial affairs. Eight of those cases involved sexual misconduct ranging from unwanted fondling to penetration. Nine students were placed on disciplinary probation, eight were suspended and two were expelled.

Rowan: Since 2010, the university’s board has held 12 hearings, seven for sexual assault and five for fondling. In three of the 12 cases, the accused students were deemed not guilty. Five cases resulted in expulsion. Other sanctions included one-year and two-year suspensions.

POSTED: Wednesday, July 16, 2014, 12:41 PM

Rutgers University’s Board of Governors on Wednesday approved a $3.6 billion budget that calls for a 2.2 percent tuition increase.

Annual undergraduate tuition for in-state students will now go to $10,954 from $10,718. The resolution for the increase called the 2.2 percent hike  “modest but necessary.”

Mandatory fees will increase by 2.8 percent at the New Brunswick campus, 2.79 percent at the Newark campus and 3.76 percent at the Camden campus. Tuition and mandatory fees for a full-time, in-state arts and sciences student at Rutgers-Camden was $13,370 for the school year that just ended.

Jonathan Lai @ 12:41 PM  Permalink | 0
POSTED: Friday, July 11, 2014, 5:42 PM

Newly elected alumni trustees to Penn State’s board left no doubt Friday that they would press on for exoneration of the university and its leaders in the child sex abuse scandal involving former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.

Al Lord, former head of student loan lender Sallie Mae, introduced a resolution as the meeting was about to end that calls for a re-investigation of the Sandusky matter, while blasting the university-commissioned report released two years ago by former FBI director Louis Freeh. It was the Freeh report that said university leaders including former President Graham B. Spanier and the late football coach Joe Paterno covered up Sandusky’s crimes.

The motion was seconded by Alice Pope, a university professor and another newly elected alumni trustee.

POSTED: Friday, July 11, 2014, 4:19 PM

Even as Pennsylvania State University’s board of trustees voted to raise tuition by nearly three percent on its main campus, new President Eric Barron announced plans to focus on the soaring debt that graduates face.

Over the last 10 years, Penn State graduates have seen their debt grow less than $20,000 a decade ago to an average of $35,000 today, Barron said in his first presentation to the board of trustees on Friday. About two-thirds of students graduate with debt – the same percentage as a decade ago.

Much debt, Barron said, is incurred because students don’t graduate within four years. More than 2,600 freshmen who began in 2007-08 and needed a fifth and sixth year borrowed an additional $23 million, Barron said, addressing trustees assembled at the university’s Schuylkill Haven campus.

POSTED: Thursday, July 10, 2014, 5:40 PM

Penn State is aiming to broaden its reach even more with Massive Open Online Courses.

For the first time, it will offer one of its most popular courses - “Creativity, Innovation and Change” — in Chinese.

All the course materials will be available in Chinese as well as English, the university announced.

POSTED: Thursday, July 10, 2014, 12:52 PM
Old Main on the Penn State campus in State College, Pa. The college plans to hike tuition by 3 percent. (LAURENCE KESTERSON / Staff Photographer)

Students at Penn State's University Parkl campus would see their tuition rise nearly 3 percent under a proposal to be considered by the board of trustees on Friday.

Under the proposal, in-state freshmen and sophmores in most majors would pay more than $27,200 in tuition, fees and room and board next year - that includes an annual increase of $482 in tuition. Charges for upperclassmen vary; they would pay more than $28,500.

In-state students at University Park last year paid on average $26,362 in tuition, fees and room and board.

About this blog
Susan Snyder has covered education for The Philadelphia Inquirer since she joined the paper in 1998. She reported on the Philadelphia School District for nearly a decade before becoming the Inquirer's higher education reporter. She was co-lead reporter of the Inquirer team that produced the Pulitzer-prize winning "Assault on Learning" series, detailing widespread violence in Philadelphia’s public schools. Snyder previously won regional, state and national reporting awards, including a first place National Headliner award in education writing. She has covered education for almost her entire reporting career. She is a 1985 graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Reach Susan at ssnyder@phillynews.com.

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