higher ed

Adults without degrees can benefit from certificates

While higher education remains a viable path to economic advancement, adults without a postsecondary degree are increasingly benefitting from non-degree certificates and certifications, according to a recent report. As automation and technological advances demand more skills from workers in the changing economy, Strada Education Network and Lumina Foundation partnered to determine the value and impact of the growing number of non-degree credentials.

Degree requirements dropped as equity sought in workplace

At a time when higher education degrees are both under scrutiny and lauded, one county government in Colorado is experimenting with an initiative that has eliminated degree requirements for more than 80 positions. It wasn’t the value of the degree that prompted the move, but the question of equity and wanting to achieve a more inclusive workforce. While such moves are rare, similar efforts may blaze the way to new workforce requirements and advancements and help inclusion.

Washington’s expansive college tuition program intended to build state's workforce

The Washington legislature passed a higher education bill that is awaiting the governor’s signature that would provide more aid for state residents attending higher education institutions in the state. The bill could raise nearly $1 billion over four years through an increase in the state’s business and occupation tax.

$42.4 million philanthropic grant to help fuel regional innovation in Northern Indiana

As a way to help encourage innovation and workforce development in Northern Indiana, a five-year, $42.4 million grant from the Lilly Endowment will support the Labs for Industry Futures and Transformation (LIFT) Network. An effort of the University of Notre Dame and the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership, the LIFT Network will launch iNDustry Labs at Notre Dame’s Innovation Park, a burgeoning innovation district on the campus’ southern end. This is the sixth region in Indiana where the Lilly Endowment has made an economic development commitment.

Roadmap provided for university research and tech commercialization

As a bedrock of American innovation, universities and federal laboratories research and develop new products that help drive economic growth. A new study from the Economic Growth Institute at the University of Michigan aims to improve national competitiveness in this arena by providing a roadmap for universities that includes best practices on translating research from the lab to the marketplace.

State funding for higher ed only half recovered

State funding for higher education has only halfway recovered in the 10 years since the Great Recession, according to a recent State Higher Education Finance (SHEF) report. The report also found that while higher education funding is stabilizing, the shift to greater reliance on tuition as a revenue source has leveled off, but remains higher than since before the Great Recession.

Community colleges named in college excellence program

Two community colleges in Florida became the winners of the 2019 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, which recognizes high achievement and performance among America’s community colleges. Winners were Indian River State College (IRSC) ($350,000) in Fort Pierce, Florida, and Miami Dade College ($350,000) in Miami; Odessa College and Palo Alto College in Texas and Pierce College in Washington were named as Rising Stars ($100,000 each).

Report offers guidance for university-community partnerships in urban areas

University-based economic development practitioners seeking to improve their relationships with urban areas have a new resource guide available to them, thanks to research from the Thriving Cities Lab at the University of Virginia’s Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture. The lab offers guidance for colleges and universities and in its Field Guide for Urban University-Community Partnerships, authors Joshua Yates and Michaela Accardi conduct three interrelated analyses.  First, their report looks at 100 urban colleges and universities with a focus on how they interact with their home cities. Second, they cluster universities into five-distinct groups based on the types of strategies and activities they employ related to community partnerships. Based on this analysis, the authors highlight best practices at universities across the country, with a focus on specific outcomes, challenges experienced, and lessons learned, and conclude with a stepwise framework to assist colleges and universities, as well as recommendations for practitioners to make the most of these findings.

Shrinking funding for higher ed misunderstood; impacts reverberate

Decreasing state funding for higher education is having a negative effect on higher education in the New England states, according to research from the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. The report comes on the heels of a recent survey from American Public Media (APM) and the Hechinger Report showed that most Americans are unaware that governmental funding for public colleges and universities has actually decreased over the past 10 years. Decreased funding has resulted in higher tuition, more student loan debt, fewer approved patent applications, and implications for the New England economy, the Fed report asserts.

Tech Talkin’ Govs, part 6: Education, workforce, climate change top TBED agendas

Educating the next generation of workers, ensuring they will have the skills necessary for the jobs of the future and paying attention to the actions that will affect the climate are all on the agendas of the latest round of governors giving their state of the state and budget addresses. A focus on skills can be seen in addresses from governors in California, Maine, Michigan, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania. States are also continuing with initiatives to forward attention on climate change, as reflected in Maine’s climate agenda and Michigan joining other states in the Climate Alliance.

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