To Survive, Community Colleges Need to Stay True to Their Mission

While community colleges are known as a low-cost path to higher education, some might be shocked to learn that their enrollments took a steeper hit than the four-year sector in the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic. Usually, economic downturns help the two-year sector’s enrollments when learners are attracted by the more affordable tuition and … Continue reading “To Survive, Community Colleges Need to Stay True to Their Mission”


Did You Know? Another Pause on Student Loan Repayments

Student loans in the U.S. total nearly $1.7 trillion, and at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, President Trump temporarily paused federal student loan payments and dropped interest rates to zero. The original suspension, which began on March 13, 2020, was only meant to last two months. It has now been extended by both President … Continue reading “Did You Know? Another Pause on Student Loan Repayments”


How Can Professors Inspire Students to Want to Learn?

COVID-19 has revolutionized how we think about online college teaching. Until last spring, two perspectives predominated. One argued that massively enrolled online classes presented by impressive teachers or prestigious universities would increase efficiency while preserving quality. The other worried about the quality of online classes, and that the gap between those able to afford in-person … Continue reading “How Can Professors Inspire Students to Want to Learn?”


Stith: “The Best Community College System in the Country”

In the past year, the North Carolina Community College system said goodbye to one president and gained another. After former president Peter Hans took up his new role as the head of the University of North Carolina system, the community college system began its search for a new leader.  In December 2020, Thomas Stith was … Continue reading “Stith: “The Best Community College System in the Country””


Did You Know? The Higher Ed Bureaucracy Won the Pandemic

An ill wind has buffeted higher education in the year of the plague. Workers have been laid off, the ranks of the professoriate have shrunk, and enrollment declines across the industry threaten the long-term finances of all but the most prestigious institutions. While the pain has not been as deep as some experts feared, a … Continue reading “Did You Know? The Higher Ed Bureaucracy Won the Pandemic”


The Pandemic May Be Ending, But Student Anxiety Isn’t

Students have had to make many sacrifices over the past year, be they financial, academic, or personal. The sudden changes and conflicting campus policies have taken a significant toll on their well-being and mental health. After a lifetime of in-class learning alongside their peers, colleges pushed them off-campus and into de facto isolation via Zoom. … Continue reading “The Pandemic May Be Ending, But Student Anxiety Isn’t”


Did You Know? The Fight Over Campus Vaccine Mandates

As American higher ed prepares for the on-campus experience again, college leaders are encountering a problem: whether they can (or should) mandate the COVID-19 vaccine. The response varies by state and institution. In states like Utah and Texas, state legislatures have banned colleges and all state entities from requiring vaccines. Other places, like North Carolina, … Continue reading “Did You Know? The Fight Over Campus Vaccine Mandates”


Did You Know? College Enrollments Fall Again

Student enrollment dipped at the beginning of the pandemic, but the numbers went from bad to worse a year later. As Inside Higher Ed reported, spring undergraduate enrollment fell almost 6 percent compared to last year—with a 11 percent decline among community colleges. Colleges lost younger students between 18 and 20 the most: their enrollment … Continue reading “Did You Know? College Enrollments Fall Again”


Letter to the Editor: The “new normal” of learning

To the editor: In the midst of a global health crisis, suffering, fear and anxiety are to be expected. This should not surprise anyone. In fact, these have always been part of life. The anticipation of one’s mortality at different times—especially now—is unavoidable. Megan Zogby’s latest “Did You Know? Students Still Struggling with Mental Health?” … Continue reading “Letter to the Editor: The “new normal” of learning”


The Trouble with Faculty Hiring Booms in a Politicized Time

Most businesses and the general public had a brutal year in 2020—perhaps with the notable exceptions of Zoom and toilet paper manufacturers. Universities suffered as well, with enrollment drops and budget cuts forcing them to freeze hiring and salaries, furlough faculty and staff, and restrict spending. Some colleges even went insolvent, with many others on … Continue reading “The Trouble with Faculty Hiring Booms in a Politicized Time”