Small colleges and universities understand both the value, and often the necessity, of collaboration in order to advance their own unique and individual institutions. Many operate with modest resources yet are expected by their constituencies to deliver the same level of quality education as any other college or university, regardless of their wealth or stature in the marketplace. Such is the nature of accreditation reviews which has a way of leveling the playing field in the academy, as we are all expected to meet the minimum requirements of the accrediting bodies that review and sanction our work.
Toppenish, WA — Heritage University has produced a series of brief instructional videos each featuring a “breakthrough strategy” to enable first-generation college student success. The videos highlight practices that can be used across a number of disciplines and are available to educators nationwide. The strategies are supported by the research literature on college-level classroom-based practices.
Understandably, colleges and universities today are seriously considering the consequences of what President Obama and his administration are proposing for significant changes to how higher education in this country functions, and measures its worth. Those of us who have made higher education our life's work know from experience that the merit of these changes will be intensely debated in our circles and perhaps some may actually come to fruition. That said, early response is suggesting many of these reforms will be difficult to actually implement.
By Kelly Field
August 22, 2013, The Chronicle of Higher Education
President Obama continues his three-campus "college cost" bus tour on Friday, promoting his plans to make college more affordable through a mix of carrots and sticks.
The heart of the proposals is a controversial plan to rate colleges based on measures of access, affordability, and student outcomes, and to allocate aid based on those ratings. Under the plan, students attending higher-rated institutions could obtain larger Pell Grants and more-affordable loans.
By Prof. Jorge L. Díaz-Herrera, Ph.D., President, Keuka College
July 11, 2013
KEUKA PARK, N.Y.—While pleased that Senate bipartisan negotiators reached a tentative deal on student loan interest rates, Keuka College President Dr. Jorge L. Díaz-Herrera believes there was a better deal to be struck.
By Doug Lippincott, Keuka College
June 4, 2013, Around the Tower
Keuka College has joined a national organization that advocates for needy students and their colleges.
The College recently became a member of the Yes We Must Coalition, a non-profit organization of 32 small, private, non-profit colleges and universities across the U.S. that work to help low-income, first generation, and minority students receive a higher education.
By Leslie Reed, World-Herald Staff Writer
May 28, 2013, The Omaha World Herald
College of St. Mary officials say a scorecard that the Obama administration released this year doesn't do justice to the Omaha college and its mission to serve low-income and nontraditional students.
So they've worked up their own version and hope it will be adopted across the country by other colleges that serve similar students.
By Goldie Blumenstyk
March 25, 2013, The Chronicle of Higher Education
Alarmed that the college-completion agenda and other national policy and financing debates overlook the special challenges of needy students and the institutions they attend, a coalition of colleges called Yes We Must is revving up to ensure that its concerns are not ignored.
The three-year-old Yes We Must, which has 32 members, is a coalition for private colleges no larger than 5,000 students where at least 50 percent of the undergraduates qualify for Pell Grants. Many of the current members also have small endowments and operate on tight budgets.
by M Lapham
November 19, 2012, DetroitUnspun - The Detroit Regional News Hub
Imagine you are a student attending college with a Pell Grant and then legislation is passed in Washington changing the rules. You can no longer afford school. It looks like the rug was pulled out from under you and all your work … and your ability to graduate on time … may be for naught. This is not a very comforting reality for many students.
Thoughts from the Yes We Must Coalition about the Reimagining project sponsored by the Gates Foundation.
By Allie Grasgreen
September 12, 2012, Inside Higher Ed
Two years ago, Michael J. Sorrell was giving a speech to the student body when he noticed one of his favorite students in the front row. Despite sitting only 25 feet or so from Sorrell, the student was squinting to see him. Sorrell, president of the historically black Paul Quinn College in Dallas, stopped the speech and asked how many students would go to the eye doctor if he made the arrangements. It turned into more than just a poll. Between 10 and 15 percent of students needed glasses and lacked the means to get them or have their eyes examined. Not anymore.
The Yes We Must Coalition is grateful to the Kresge Foundation for a grant of $150,000 to implement "Planning for Sustainability" from October 1, 2012, through December 31, 2013.
by Dr. Vinton Thompson, President, Metropolitan College of NY
February 2012, New York Nonprofit Press
In December, shortly before Christmas, with little notice and no debate or public comment, Congress eliminated an important route to higher education for non-traditional students. Presently, students without a high school diploma or a GED can demonstrate college-ready proficiency by passing one of a handful of federally designated tests at a prescribed level. If they succeed, they are eligible for federal aid programs like Pell Grants and student loans. This route to college was established for students who demonstrate “ability to benefit from education or training”, generally shortened to ATB (ability to benefit). It applies to American students without high school credentials and to some immigrants with high school credentials from abroad, permitting them to enter college directly, without diversion of time and effort. Come July 1, 2012, entrance to college through ATB will end. I am writing here to put this setback to college access in context and urge those who can to take advantage of this opportunity before it vanishes.