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Oct. 2, 2019
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NEBHE has published its 2019 Annual Report, providing an overview of the interstate compact's programs, including Tuition Break, the Policy & Research team, The New England Journal of Higher Education, the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA) and new NEBHE initiatives on transfer and upskilling. The report notes that NEBHE engages policy leaders in the six New England states and beyond to raise awareness of key issues related to higher education and catalyze discussion and policy change.    

NEBHE's fall 2019 board meeting in Woodstock, Vt., focused on open education resources (OER). As a cost-effective replacement for textbooks, the use of OER aligns with NEBHE's priority to develop new models for cost-saving collaborations to help institutions change business practices, lower operating costs and contain student tuition and fees. OER promotes equity in the classroom by removing access barriers to student learning materials and provides faculty with opportunities to customize textbooks to best support their course learning outcomes. Among angles explored by NEBHE delegates: how to incentivize faculty adoption and creation of OER, for example, by making it count in the tenure and promotion processes. To learn more about the fundamentals of OER, click here and follow @nebhe for the latest on our work.

Kate O'Connor remembers late mother Martha O'Connor. NEBHE delegate and Community College of Vermont President Joyce Judy looks on.

NEBHE honored the late Martha O'Connor with a 2019 New England Excellence Award for Vermont. A teacher who chaired both the state Board of Education and the Vermont State Colleges Board of Trustees, O'Connor died September at age 82 after a brief illness. Her daughters Kate and Kerry and son Kevin accepted the award in her honor.

The 2019 Regional Award went to the Governor's Institutes of Vermont (GIV). The initiative founded in 1982 by the Vermont Agency of Education and Vermont Arts Council partners with 10 Vermont colleges to provide intensive academic and artistic group residencies each year for more than 500 9th-11th graders from varying backgrounds.
From left: NEBHE President and CEO Michael K. Thomas; GIV Executive Director Karen Taylor Mitchell; GIV participants: Dana Castro, Trace Barnhart, Isaac Eddy, Martha Mathis and Alden Ducharme; Vermont Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman and NEBHE delegate and Vermont State Colleges Chancellor Jeb Spaulding.

More than six years after participating, 98% of alumni point to specific lasting positive outcomes from their participation, and 88% name GIV one of the most important things they did during their high school years. Access to GIV is guaranteed for any Vermonter through sliding scale tuition.



Check out our newest commentary and analysis from New England's higher education leaders

The Answer to Rural Woes Is Far More than Broadband

The 2016 election exposed an urban-rural divide that is consigning our smallest communities to second-tier status. It's troubling that no candidate has begun to identify a strategy to concentrate on a more sweeping problem: More and more young people in our nation's rural communities look at their hometowns and realize those places simply can't support their dreams. Rick Dalton, founder of CFES Brilliant Pathways, explains how the nonprofit's Rural Forward program plans to raise $10 million from corporations, individuals and foundations to support 100 rural schools in needy communities over the next five years and recruit 100 business and 100 college partners who will provide another $10 million of in-kind support, including workshops on admissions and how to pay for college, tuition assistance, mentors, internships and job shadowing.

The Regional Blue Economy: Viewing a Healthy Ocean as Economic Opportunity and Moral Obligation

The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth is leading an effort funded by the U.S. Economic Development Agency, area banks and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to grow a marine technology corridor that spans I-195 from Narragansett Bay, through the urban centers of New Bedford and Fall River, Mass., and across the Cape Cod Canal. Writing in NEJHE, UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Robert E. Johnson outlines steps to make the blue economy dream come true. His recommendations include matching university research expertise with industry need; improving STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) education in local schools, especially for English language learners; streamlining pathways from community college to four-year universities; developing incentives for college graduates to remain in the region with tactics ranging from college debt payments to direct sales pitches from mayors; and helping students in the region who started but stopped out of college to secure a degree or other credential that positions them to succeed.

We Are the World? Making Sure Global Affairs Education Considers Diversity and Advances Inclusion

Rarely has NEJHE fielded so serendipitous a story pitch ... President Trump had just embarrassingly told three congresswomen of color to "go back" to their countries (which turned out to be the U.S). Meanwhile, deans of top U.S. graduate schools in international affairs (including Tufts, Columbia and Georgetown) had issued a call for action to increase the focus on diversity and inclusion issues in global affairs education. About 200 academic leaders quickly signed on to the recommendations. Carla Koppell, a distinguished fellow at the Georgetown University Institute for Women, Peace and Security, notes that as a growing number of college graduates who studied diversity and inclusion issues as undergraduates move on to graduate school, pressure will mount for greater attention to these issues. "To combat the violence and vitriol that has been particularly evident over the past few weeks," writes Koppell, "we must move swiftly to counter negative rhetoric born of ignorance, and ensure full appreciation of the richness we gain from our diversity."

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Keeping up w ith news and events in higher education

Alexander's HEA Proposals Panned by Democrats, Praised by Ivanka (DC Shuttle)

US Ed Dept Calls for Remaking University Middle East Programs with More Focus on "Positive" Aspects of Judaism and Christianity (DC Shuttle)

New CFO at Lasell U and its Onsite Senior Living Community (Comings and Goings)

Mark Up of Ed Bills Hits a Wall (DC Shuttle)

New Trustee Leaders and a Reactivated Rights Commission for Immigrants (Comings and Goings)

Announcing the NEBHE-Chinese Government Scholarship Recipients for 2019-20


View constantly updated higher education job listings at Joblink, NEBHE's collaboration with New England HERC.

Explore the powerful articles and other resources at our revamped
nebhe.org. And be sure to follow @nebhe on Twitter.  
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.  Join Our Mailing List!