higher education

When Nazareth College President Daan Braveman said on a recent show that the cost of college is not rising as much as people think, many listeners called or wrote to the program, asking for clarification.

We look at the facts: actual price versus sticker price. Help for low-income families. Needs-blind admissions. The impact of schools being pushed to have much nicer amenities. In the end, we hope to have a clearer picture about the cost of higher education for students, families, and taxpayers. Our guests:

  • Daan Braveman, president of Nazareth College
  • Ian Mortimer, vice president for enrollment management at Nazareth College

In its welcome letter to incoming freshmen, the University of Chicago told students it does not support trigger warnings or safe spaces.

We discuss the debate over balancing academic freedom and student health and safety with representatives from local colleges.

  • Dr. M. Elizabeth Thorpe, assistant professor of communications at the College at Brockport
  • Dr. Linda Ross, associate professor of psychology at Finger Lakes Community College
  • Christina Hoff Sommers, resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute

Millennials are having less sex than any generation in 60 years. Does this mean that the stereotypes are wrong? What's behind it?

It's interesting timing because students are heading back to college, where -- surprise! -- not as many students are having sex as incoming freshmen tend to think. That's the backdrop to our discussion with Nora Bradbury Haehl, a veteran of youth ministry and the co-author of The Freshman Survival Guide. Her book is the Christian-based advice guide that defies most stereotypes of Christian advice guides.

From sex and relationships to cheating on exams, from respecting people of different backgrounds to mental health, we discuss how incoming freshmen see their new world.

Randy Gorbman / WXXI News

About 1,300 University of Rochester new and incoming students  were all around the Rochester Monday as part of the annual Wilson Day activities.

That’s an event that’s been going on for more than 25 years, where the students go out to help a number of community agencies with everything from gardening to interacting with seniors.

U of R president Joel Seligman notes that Wilson Day was named after a founder of  Xerox, Joseph Wilson.

Hillary Clinton - in a nod to Bernie Sanders - is proposing free tuition at public colleges and universities for roughly 80% of American students. Politico reports that the plan is already under sharp attack by private college presidents, who say it could rob families of choice and put some private colleges out of business. The Clinton campaign says it's about making higher education more accessible. Our panel discusses it:

The Obama Administration announced last week that for the first time in more than 20 years, prison inmates will be able to receive financial aid for college. The "Second Chance Pell" pilot program will enable prisoners to take college courses using Pell Grants paid for by taxpayers. About 12,000 inmates are expected to participate.

The news re-ignites debate over funding for prison to college programs: supporters say the programs reduce recidivism, but opponents say they are a waste of taxpayer money and are unfair to college students who have not committed crimes.

We explore the impact of prison to college programs, including those in the Rochester area. Our guests:


A group of RIT students took first place Monday in a competition designed to end extremism. 

The competition is sponsored in part by the U.S. State Department as a way of countering hateful extremist rhetoric, by groups like ISIS and others, in various online sites and social media.

A team of 17 RIT students, many of them marketing majors, was one of three finalists in this competition which also includes a team from Azerbaijan and Brussels. Five of the 17 students traveled to Washington to represent RIT.

Nazareth College has been awarded a federal grant of more than a million dollars to improve services for children with autism.

The U.S.  Department of Education  has awarded nearly $1.2 million to Nazareth College to help improve educational and therapeutic services and results for children with autism.

Malia Obama is taking a gap year, which the New York Times referred to as a post-high school "adventure." Is that accurate?

More and more, high school graduates are taking a long look at college, and deciding to wait before committing to an expensive and debt-ridden path. We talk about the pros and cons of going straight to college, versus taking a year (or more) away from school. Our guests:

  • Ethan Knight, founder and executive director of the American Gap Association
  • Heather Grasso, school counselor at Geneva High School
  • John Serafine, school counselor at Fairport High School
  • Emma Milligan, fresh off a gap year

Non-tenured faculty members at the University of Rochester are considering forming a union to help adjunct and contingent professors improve their compensation. They could join colleagues at more than 40 colleges around the country who have unionized.

Those who support unionization say it would improve adjunct faculty members’ standard of living, provide a more stable environment for students, and increase retention and graduation rates. Opponents argue that it will result in fewer jobs, larger class sizes, and less money being available for scholarships and tuition relief.  

Our panel discusses both sides of the issue. Our guests:

  • Lisa Cerami, adjunct professor of German at Nazareth College
  • Matt Witten, adjunct professor of contemporary music at the University of Rochester, Monroe Community College, Finger Lakes Community College, Rowan University, and D’Youville College
  • Christopher Niemiec, senior lecturer in psychology at the University of Rochester
  • Miles Meth, University of Rochester student in favor of the union
  • Darya Nicol, University of Rochester student in favor of the union