WXXI AM News

higher education

St. John Fisher College has launched a new major: students can now graduate with a degree in sustainability. The program links the campus to the community in an effort to ignite conversations about sustainability across industries.

We discuss the program, what it means to graduate with a sustainability degree, and how students can apply that knowledge after college. In studio:

  • Michael Boller, Ph.D., associate professor in biology, and director of the sustainability program at St. John Fisher College
  • Patricia Donahue, senior pollution prevention engineer, and manager of the sustainable supply chain program at the New York State Pollution Prevention Institute
  • Julia Greene, St. John Fisher College graduate with a degree in psychology and a minor in sustainability
  • Evan Bourtis, senior at St. John Fisher College majoring in biology and media communications and minoring in sustainability

Student journalism has come under the spotlight after a series of media outlets reported on alleged censorship of the campus newspaper at Liberty University. Student editors and reporters working for the “Liberty Champion” say faculty members and the president of the university, Jerry Falwell Jr., spiked articles they found to be critical of the university or amended articles they thought were critical of President Trump. Falwell told students that the newspaper had been created to champion the interest of the university, and that the institution, as the publisher of the publication, is responsible for content decisions. The situation sparked debates across the Liberty campus and beyond.

This hour, we talk to local student journalists about ethics issues surrounding student publications and freedom of the press. Our guests:

Three-quarters of American college professors are adjuncts, according to various recent studies. The Atlantic Monthly framed the issue in terms of a battle for not just working professors, but the quality of higher education; the magazine explored the question, "Can a budding labor movement improve the lives of non-tenured faculty - and, in the process, fix higher education?"

We discuss the move toward unionization among adjuncts, and what that might mean for professors and students. Our guests:

  • Colleen Wolf, adjunct lecturer in music at Nazareth College
  • Jake Allen, organizer for SEIU-Faculty Forward at Nazareth College
  • Pat Domaratz, labor relations specialist employed by NYSUT
  • Paul Ciminelli, Second Amendment expert and attorney at Ciminelli & Ciminelli, and adjunct professor in homeland security management at Monroe Community College

Last week, we heard from Congressman Tom Reed on why he wants the GOP tax plan to pass; today we hear from some who oppose it. Grad students in particular are concerned that it will balloon their expenses, blocking their career paths. And in Rochester, a bipartisan coalition of mayors and supervisors spoke about their concerns.

We get their perspective on who will be impacted, and how.

  • Scott O'Neil, University of Rochester graduate student
  • Helen Davies, University of Rochester graduate student
  • Bill Moehle, supervisor for the town of Brighton

npr.org

New York State is planning to expand opportunities for college courses in some state prisons. Governor Andrew Cuomo and Manhattan D-A Cyrus Vance say $7.3 million will provide college-level education and training for  more than 2,500 prisoners across the state.

The money comes from large bank settlements secured by the Manhattan District Attorney’s office. 

Among the programs in this region will be classes at the Albion Correctional facility, provided by Medaille College and Five Points Correctional Facility, with services provided by Cornell University.

Upward Bound

16 local teenagers and Rochester police officers will share the stage Saturday afternoon at the Police and Teen Talent Slam.

The event is hosted by Monroe Community College's Upward Bound program, whose goal is to get first generation low-income students to college.

Gwen Bell, program advisor for Upward Bound says the talent show is supposed to give officers and teenagers the chance to see a different, fun side of each other; and move perceptions away from distrust to acceptance and understanding.

We loved the recent New York Times interviews with first-generation college students, who carve their own path. This is our chance to hear the experiences of first-generation students in our area: how they made it to college; how they're faring; their biggest challenges. Our guests:

  • James Nguyen, St. John Fisher College class of 2019
  • Kimberly Statt, student at MCC
  • Bernard Rodgers, RIT class of 2017

Hobart and William Smith Colleges on Thursday named their new president, Gregory Vincent.

He is described as a national expert on civil rights, social justice and campus culture, Vincent currently serves at The University of Texas at Austin as Vice President for Diversity and Community Engagement, W.K. Kellogg Professor of Community College Leadership and Professor of Law.

Vincent is also a 1983 graduate of Hobart and William Smith.

npr.org

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Will New York's first-in-the-nation free tuition program for middle-class college students spread to other states?

That's the hope of proponents such as Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, who made debt-free college a key talking point in their Democratic presidential campaigns. And that's the prediction of its main champion, Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who called the plan a "model for the nation."

College presidents sound off on free tuition

Apr 10, 2017

Representatives from private and public schools are reacting to the proposal in the new state budget that provides free tuition at public colleges and universities for middle classe students.

Daan Braveman is president at Nazareth College, a private school.

He argues the free tuition through the Excelsior Scholarship program is not as robust as media reports make it out to be, and private schools recognize the need to make college accessible and affordable.

Braveman says private schools educate as many people from poor families as the four year public schools.

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