the weekly digest from NEJHE and other news from the New England Board of Higher Education
Sept. 16, 2020

Amid the college admissions scandals revealed by the federal "Varsity Blues" investigation, enrollment management pioneer Jack Maguire reflects on challenges to the "integrity" of the enrollment process. "At the highest levels of American leadership, there are now documented examples of secret payments to stand-in SAT test-takers to gain undeserved university admissions and to assist with writing assignments to cover up laziness and corruption—and nonstop braggadocio about fraudulent academic achievements," writes the former Boston College admissions dean and founder of Maguire Associates. "And too often," he adds, "the names of wealthy criminals remain on buildings and academic departments!" Maguire also weighs in on the legal actions of "entitled well-to-do” students who are accusing Harvard and Yale of law-violating affirmative action ... and concludes that those elite institutions should be doing more—not less—to support affirmative action.

Along the back wall of University of Vermont President Suresh Garimella's office is the 150-plus-years-old desk of Vermont Sen. Justin Morrill, the author of the Morrill Act of 1862 establishing the country’s first land-grant universities. It's a handsome piece of 19th century craftsmanship, but more importantly, a vivid reminder of UVM’s status as one of the earliest land grants. What comes with that designation: bright students, enterprising faculty and intellectual firepower to fuel state businesses and help local and state policymakers address socioeconomic challenges the state is facing, not the least of which, recovering from the ravages of COVID-19.
More from The New England Journal of Higher Education

Pandemic-related costs on top of ever-rising tuition and fees and changing student preferences have already forced higher education institutions to make substantial budget cuts. But some cost-reduction consultants believe there is still room to cut up to 20% from administrative and operational expenses without hurting educational programs. The savings would come in areas such as telecommunications, credit card processing, small package delivery, waste management and electronic signatures.

"As COVID-19 and the upcoming flu season pose new uncertainties," writes one Massachusetts lawyer, "many faculty and administrators are brushing up against less comfortable topics, including extended illness, incapacity and death." Attorney Deborah Danger notes that in recent weeks, up to 80% of the calls she received were from educators and students wanting to put together estate plans, or update previous plans, as they return to the classroom. Danger outlines tools such as wills and healthcare proxies, as well as special concerns for professors, including literary executors and protections for intellectual property and side hustles such as part-time teaching gigs.
Tracking Coronavirus
NEBHE's Tracking Coronavirus web resource features an easy-to-use display showing institutions' plans for the fall in light of COVID-19. It also details institutions' healthcare capacities and their proximity to external healthcare resources. Also find links to: COVID-19 News; Governmental Responses, Guidance & Advocacy; Distance Education Resources & Compliance; Institutional Finance Information; and Admissions and Enrollment Information. Please share updates from your institution at: cpeyser@nebhe.org.
Newslink

NEJHE's Comings and Goings highlights key appointments and job changes in New England higher education and beyond.
Susan Dynarski
News Around NEBHE

Under the direction of the NEBHE president and board, the Fellow for Faculty Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I) will provide vision, leadership and planning in the development and implementation of a new regional strategy to expand faculty diversity at postsecondary institutions throughout New England. The Fellow will assist in developing an inclusive, long-term action plan to address societal, institutional and structural impediments to faculty diversity as a core premise for equity and inclusion in postsecondary education.
Our Webinars
Upcoming NEBHE Webinars

Join us on Wednesday, Sept. 23 at 1 p.m. for Upskilling Massachusetts, and Tuesday, Sept. 29 at 1 p.m. for Upskilling Connecticut. These webinars, based on NEBHE's recent white paper, will focus on real-time labor-market data and consumer insights data from Strada Education Network to highlight successes, challenges and opportunities for upskilling in each state. Additionally, a robust panel discussion will illuminate effective upskilling programs in Massachusetts and Connecticut. 

Panelists include:
Kathy ManningDean of the Center for Workforce Development and Continuing Education at Quinsigamond Community College
Kathy RentchAssociate Vice President for Strategic Academic & Workforce Initiatives at Quinsigamond Community College
Theresa RowlandVice President of Sector Strategies, Commonwealth Corporation

Panelists include:
Vicki Bozzuto, Director of Career and Transfer Readiness, Connecticut State Colleges and Universities System
Sonia Cardenas, Acting Dean of the Faculty and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Trinity College
Mark Scheinberg, President of Goodwin University
NEJHE NewsBlast is a summary of NEJHE content and other news around NEBHE prepared weekly by NEJHE Executive Editor John O. Harney and emailed every Wednesday to opinion leaders and practitioners. When responding to NEJHE content, please make sure that your remarks are relevant, courteous and engaging. Individuals are responsible for their comments, which do not represent the opinions of the New England Board of Higher Education. We urge commenters to briefly note their occupational or other interest in the topic at hand. Please refrain from offensive language, personal attacks and distasteful comments or they may be deleted. Comments may not appear immediately. Thank you for staying engaged.
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