Thursday, February 21, 2013

NEWS LINKS | Feb. 21, 2013

SBCTC NEWS LINKS | Articles about – and of interest to – Washington state community and technical colleges




Education offers a way up and a way out
Schools like Bates [Technical College] and the state’s community colleges can provide opportunities that help students like Ramirez create new lives for themselves. But in recent years, funding cuts have hurt their ability to educate as many students as they’d like to. Ideally, these schools would be expanding to train more workers, not cutting back.

The News Tribune, February 19, 2013


Programs send local man back to Clark College for retraining

Working as a database technician for a small business in Battle Ground, [Dennis] Davis was earning $10 an hour — about $20,000 annually before taxes. His meager earnings barely covered rent, food, utilities, gasoline. … But in the depressed economy, his employer had to trim expenses. Davis was laid off in January 2012. … He began looking for a job, but didn't get a single response, let alone an interview. … Davis realized he needed to go back to school in order to land a living-wage job. A counselor at WorkSource, the state's employment office, helped Davis apply for a Workforce Investment Act grant to register at Clark College for the certifications he needed. Davis' experience is representative of how federal, state and local programs can work together to help unemployed or underemployed workers get retraining to re-enter the job market. At Clark College, the Worker Retraining Office provides startup money for first-quarter tuition and books as students wait for other funding programs to kick in. …But he plans to go further. Eastern Washington University offers a Bachelor of Technology degree at the Clark College campus. That would put him at an even higher salary scale. … Davis credits the excellent job retraining programs and funding, both through Clark and the state's [WorkSource] office.

The Columbian, February 21, 2013


Clark College collects career fashions for job-hunting students

Clark College is opening its closet door for the ninth annual Career Clothing Closet, a free-outfit exchange that aims to help well-dressed students score jobs. … Each student who attends is entitled to one complete outfit, according to Sarah Weinberger, Clark's service learning and volunteer program manager. … "We are looking for professional-caliber donations," she said. Many students are not exactly wealthy, Weinberger said, but they'll want to "look their finest" for what may well be their first post-college job interview -- and, perhaps, the doorway to a new life. "We have so many students receiving financial aid, so many working part-time, who don't have means to buy expensive new clothes," said Weinberger. "Do you know what a suit costs? Even at Goodwill it adds up." 

The Columbian, February 20, 2013


Community college gives high schoolers sneak peek

Krysta O’Brien, 17, explored her classmate’s carotid artery using an ultrasound machine at Spokane Community College; in another room, she learned about respiratory care.

Walking a law enforcement obstacle course on the college’s track, 18-year-old Dustin Knodel, along with dozens of other high school students, was learning about SCC’s criminal justice program.  “I knew they had one, but not this good,” he said of the program.  The two were among more than 425 regional high school students who converged on SCC Wednesday … The students, already taking professional and technical courses at Spokane Public Schools’ Northeast Washington Technical Skill Center, were there to learn what programs offered at the college align with programs they are already involved in.  The first-time event, Community Colleges Connection, is the result of collaboration between Community Colleges of Spokane and Spokane Public Schools. Students experienced a sampling of college classes in several career-technical programs, such as health care, manufacturing, information technology, automotive technology, culinary arts and criminal justice.

The Spokesman Review, February 21, 2013


Students push hard for immigration reform

A handful of college students with undocumented immigration status and big career goals gathered Wednesday at the Bothell campus of the University of Washington to urge 1st Congressional District Rep. Suzan DelBene to work for immigration reform and in particular, the passage of the DREAM Act…. Leobardo Carmona and Geovanni Olalde, Everett Community College students who both came here from Mexico, said they are happy to tell their stories, despite the unease of revealing their immigration status. Both are the first ones in their families to graduate from high school and attend college. An honors student at Everett High School, Carmona plans to transfer to a university to earn a degree in computer science. Olalde wants to be a doctor and work at Seattle Children's Hospital. Pedro Nunez, 19, a graduate of Mariner High School, studies at Edmonds Community College.
The Herald, February 21, 2013




GED changes worry "Dreamers"

New changes to the GED test mean adults currently working toward earning the certification need to finish this year or start over, and the changes could impact young undocumented immigrants who hope to apply for deportation relief through deferred action.  The high-school-equivalency test, which is recognized by every state in the nation, will change at the beginning of 2014 to align with the Common Core curricula most states have adopted. Those standards emphasize writing and content analysis. Students will also take the test via computer instead of on paper. If people who have only passed portions of the test don't complete it by next January, their scores will expire and they will have to start again. … The stakes are especially high for DREAMers. One of the many requirements for deferred action is a GED or high-school diploma, so the certificate means not only wider opportunities, but the chance to apply to stay in the country without fear of deportation.

ABC News Univision, February 19, 2013


Let’s Drop ‘Helicopter Parents’—From Our Vocabulary

First we ask parents to help get their children to our institutions. And then we ask those parents to stay away. … Studies have found that parental engagement supports higher levels of student autonomy, higher levels of psychological adjustment and life satisfaction, and higher levels of participation in and satisfaction with college. For many first-generation college students, parents and family members are an integral part of the college experience, whether celebrating her successes or assisting with family responsibilities.

The Chronicle of Higher Education, February 20, 2013


Taking the Plunge / Confessions of a Community College Dean

I like this story a lot, even though it’s a little pessimistic. Apparently, Klamath Community College, in Oregon, has decided to make a series of changes to improve student success rates.  Some of the changes are relatively straightforward, such as requiring academic advising and new student orientation. But it has gone farther than that, and eliminated late registration.

Inside Higher Ed, February 21, 2013


'The Rise of Women'

The facts of women being more likely than men to go to college, perform better academically, and major in fields other than science, technology, engineering and mathematics are mostly attributable to factors affecting students before – in some cases, long before – they enter the halls of academe. But that doesn’t mean colleges can’t do anything to mitigate the consequences.
Inside Higher Ed, February 21, 2013


Affordability and Value

The current political discussion of college costs is based on flawed assumptions about the market for high quality education, writes Alison Byerly. … Media reports like the ongoing New York Times series "Degrees of Debt" are quickly solidifying a public perception of the value of an education as a straightforward calculation of a graduate’s future earnings minus cost of attendance.  There are several flaws in the assumptions that in higher education, economic value = future earnings – price paid. … It assumes: one can discuss "higher ed" as a unified sector; higher education functions as a product; affordability is an easily defined variable that can be listed and compared; a clear distinction between the "education" offered at a college and the nonessential "amenities" that could presumably be easily discarded; that when students and families complain that college is too expensive, they want colleges to cut costs, i.e., change the way they operate.

Inside Higher Ed, February 21, 2013


A New Measure of Value

Ellen McCulloch-Lovell proposes a method to track the way colleges contribute to society in ways that go far beyond the salaries of graduates

Inside Higher Ed, February 21, 2013






Editorial: State lawmakers should freeze college tuition rates

The Seattle Times, February 20, 2013


Congressman Denny Heck Visits Pierce College's Fort Steilacoom Campus

The Washington Democrat from the 10th Congressional District was in Lakewood on Wednesday to learn more about the college's veterans services.
Lakewood-JBLM Patch, February 21, 2013



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