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October 9, 2015
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In the Hot Zone

By Kevin Sites

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Tag: University

VIDEO: Why Student Loan Debt Isn’t Just a Problem for Millennials

America’s student loan debt is now over $1.2 trillion. But it’s not just hurting millennials. One-third of that debt belongs to people in their 40s.

Posted on Oct 7, 2015 READ MORE

The Greatest Threat to Campus Free Speech May Come From Dianne Feinstein and Her Millionaire Husband

The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald reports that the California senator and her military-contractor husband Richard Blum are essentially blackmailing the University of California into punishing students who speak out against Israel.

Posted on Sep 29, 2015 READ MORE

Pope Francis Is Pushing to Help the Poor While Catholic Universities Are Leaving Them Behind

Many Catholic colleges leave low-income students with big debts. And wealthy Catholic schools that provide generous support don’t enroll many poor students.

Posted on Sep 24, 2015 READ MORE

Colleges With Plenty of Cash Saddle Their Poorest Students With Heaps of Debt

A ProPublica analysis of newly available federal data shows that some of the nation’s wealthiest colleges are leaving their poorest students with plenty of debt.

Posted on Sep 13, 2015 READ MORE

VIDEO: Why Students From Low-Income Families Are More Likely to Drop Out of College

Even when financial aid covers the cost of higher education, many students from poor backgrounds leave college without finishing their four-year degree for a reason some may not expect.

Posted on Aug 19, 2015 READ MORE

How the Israel Lobbies Hurt the University of Illinois and the First Amendment in the Salaita Case

There is no honor among thieves or ideologues, and it is sad to see a great university’s leadership descend into petty squabbling and vicious infighting over the illegal firing of Urbana-Champaign professor Steven Salaita.

Posted on Aug 15, 2015 READ MORE

Hillary Clinton to Offer Plan for Loan-Free Tuition at Public Colleges

With Americans owing a staggering $1.2 trillion in student loan debt, and about 8 million in default, her proposal reflects a Democratic push to reverse years of state cuts to higher ed. Creating a program of federal grants to the states to lower tuition is the centerpiece.

Posted on Aug 10, 2015 READ MORE

VIDEO: John Waters Has Some Wonderfully Witty Advice for the Class of 2015

“Go out in the world and f–k it up beautifully” is auteur John Waters’ advice to this year’s graduates of the Rhode Island School of Design.

Posted on Jun 8, 2015 READ MORE

VIDEO: How to Reinvent Education to Save the Economy

Sen. Bernie Sanders is making waves with a big idea to reinvent education: making public colleges and universities tuition-free. I couldn’t agree more.

Posted on May 23, 2015 READ MORE

What’s the Point of a Professor?

When he was a student in the early 1980s, Emory University English professor Mark Bauerlein and his peers spoke with their professors regularly and at length, knowing “that these moments were the heart of liberal education.” Today, polls show, one-third of students never do so.

Posted on May 10, 2015 READ MORE

Here’s Why It’s Time to Give Up the Idea That Everyone Must Go to College

The biggest absurdity is that a college degree has become the only gateway into the American middle class when not every young person is suited to four years of college. This has to stop.

Posted on Mar 23, 2015 READ MORE

Is College Worth the Cost?

This is the time of year when high school seniors apply to college, and when I get lots of mail about whether college is worth the cost. The answer is unequivocally yes, but with one big qualification.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE

Education With a Debt Sentence

Imagine corporations that intentionally target low-income single mothers as ideal customers. Imagine that these same companies claim to sell tickets to the American dream—gainful employment, the chance for a middle class life.

Posted on Sep 21, 2014 READ MORE

John Oliver on Student Debt: Our Leaders Have Decided Education Is Not Important Enough to Pay For

In an inspired back-to-school rant, John Oliver encourages college freshmen to enjoy every last second of what will undoubtedly be the best years of their lives since every year that comes after will be marked with crushing, inescapable debt.

Posted on Sep 8, 2014 READ MORE

Why College Shouldn’t Be the Only Gateway to the Middle Class

This week, millions of young people head to college and universities, aiming for a four-year liberal arts degree.

Posted on Sep 2, 2014 READ MORE

Victim of McCarthy-Era Witch Hunt Calls on U-Illinois Not to Fire Critic of Israeli Policies

In the early 1950s, under the influence of Rep. Joseph McCarthy, R-Wis., a national witch hunt was conducted for leftists.

Posted on Aug 25, 2014 READ MORE


Unpaid Interns Can Collect Back Pay Without Hurting Their Careers

After a year scrutinizing the intern economy, ProPublica’s internship investigation is coming to an end. But before signing off, we wanted to do our own end-of-semester review.

Posted on Jul 23, 2014 READ MORE

Ninian Reid (CC BY 2.0)

Elizabeth Warren’s ‘Bank on Students’ Emergency Loan Refinancing Act to Get Obama’s Endorsement

After some initial resistance, President Obama is expected to announce his support Monday for an overhaul of the federal student loan program proposed by Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

Posted on Jun 9, 2014 READ MORE

Saddled with Debt

Posted on Jun 1, 2014 READ MORE

Student Debt

Posted on May 23, 2014 READ MORE

Andra MIhali (CC BY-SA 2.0)

As Parents Struggle to Repay College Loans for Their Children, Taxpayers Also Stand to Lose

New Department of Education data show rising default rates on federal loans to parents.

Posted on Apr 8, 2014 READ MORE

BigU Football

Posted on Apr 3, 2014 READ MORE

Israel’s War on American Universities

Israel and its supporters are overseeing a nationwide crusade to silence and ban student groups challenging that nation’s official narrative about the Palestinians.

Posted on Mar 16, 2014 READ MORE

401(K) 2013 (CC BY-SA 2.0)

How Exactly Do Colleges Allocate Their Financial Aid? They Won’t Say

Universities rarely release the specific criteria behind their aid decisions. Could a little-known regulation help open the black box?

Posted on Feb 25, 2014 READ MORE

(AP/Carolyn Kaster)

Year Six of Hope and Change

It was a bittersweet briefing that told us exactly where the Obama administration finds itself at the dawn of its sixth year.

Posted on Jan 20, 2014 READ MORE


Posted on Jan 11, 2014 READ MORE

Income Inequality

Posted on Dec 20, 2013 READ MORE

John McStravick (CC-BY)

Is College Worth It?

These four books are written in the shadow of the suspicion that the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves—concerning hard work, opportunity, meritocracy, achievement and social mobility—somehow no longer pertain.

Posted on Sep 2, 2013 READ MORE

Private Colleges

Posted on Jun 21, 2013 READ MORE

Graduation cap and cash image via Shutterstock

The Growing Burden of College Fees

Student fees have been something of a known irritant for years, often criticized as a kind of stealth, second tuition imposed on unsuspecting families. But such fees are still on the rise on many campuses. And though their names can border on the comical—i.e., the “student success fee”—there’s nothing funny about how they can add up.

Posted on Mar 31, 2013 READ MORE

LINUZ90 (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Violence of Neoliberalism and the Attack on Higher Education

Higher education must be understood as a democratic public sphere—a space in which education enables students to develop a keen sense of prophetic justice, claim their moral and political agency, utilize critical analytical skills, and cultivate an ethical sensibility through which they learn to respect the rights of others.

Posted on Mar 27, 2013 READ MORE

Flickr/University of Portsmouth Students' Union

Tuition at Public Colleges Rises to Record Level

College costs climbed to an all-time high in 2012 while state and local funding for items such as operating expenses and student aid fell, a new report shows.

Posted on Mar 7, 2013 READ MORE

Mr. Fish's Cartoon

Prosecuting Prosecutorial Abuse

Massachusetts’ U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz and Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Heymann must be held accountable for their actions during their prosecution of the late Internet activist Aaron Swartz; in China, a father hired online “assassins” to kill his son’s avatar in an attempt to save his real life; meanwhile, the U.S. is giving the Afghan government a fleet of drones. These discoveries and more after the jump.

Posted on Jan 18, 2013 READ MORE


Posted on Dec 21, 2012 READ MORE    

Illustration by Mr. Fish

The Perversion of Scholarship

Fraternities, sororities and football, along with other outsized athletic programs, have decimated most major American universities.

Posted on Jul 30, 2012 READ MORE

Grads of 2012

Posted on May 22, 2012 READ MORE

shahk (CC BY-ND 2.0)

Quebec Moves to Quash Student Protests With Harsh Fines

Quebec is looking to end three months of student protests against rising tuition fees by introducing emergency legislation that would temporarily close some universities and fine the pants off of picketers blocking students and faculty from entering classrooms.

Posted on May 18, 2012 READ MORE

Glyn Lowe Photoworks (CC BY-ND 2.0)

Rep. Owens Will Reimburse Cost of Taiwan Trip

The congressman who last year took a $22,000 four-day trip to Taiwan organized by lobbyists said Friday that he will personally reimburse the university that paid for the trip.

Posted on May 12, 2012 READ MORE

AP/Butch Dill

Revolution Brewing on Student Debt

The U.S. once led the world in free education. The recent debate in Washington about whether to let student loan interest rates double ignores the fact that many students already cannot afford a college education or advanced training.

Posted on May 7, 2012 READ MORE

Kevin Dooley (CC-BY)

American Decline Is Crushing the Middle Class

Only 21 percent of all respondents in a new poll think the lives of their children will be better than their own.

Posted on Nov 2, 2011 READ MORE

California Prisoners Do or Die

Prisoners all over California continue a hunger strike despite nearing death; “Sister Wives” reality TV show stars fight the anti-polygamy law; and economists have resorted to capital bribery to resuscitate the American job market. These discoveries and more after the jump.

Posted on Jul 15, 2011 READ MORE

Flickr / jonny.hunter

The Cannibalization of College Radio

American university students are quickly losing an important means of sharing their passions and ideas with the public: college radio. Noncommercial student-run stations are being forced to the Web or elsewhere as college administrators sell their broadcast licenses to make some quick, much-needed cash. (more)

Posted on Jun 24, 2011 READ MORE

Basheer Tome (CC-BY)

Commencement Day for a Lost Generation

The country my generation is passing on to my son and his peers is a mean-spirited place of global warming, class warfare and diminishing expectations, where the top 1 percent of households own nearly 35 percent of all privately held wealth and the “bottom” 80 percent lays claim to less than half that.

Posted on Jun 22, 2011 READ MORE

Flickr / un_cola

Enlightened but Unemployed

The well-intentioned handwringing over what to do about the slow asphyxiation of the traditional American humanities education continues over at, where novelist Kim Brooks laments the failure of liberal arts colleges to prepare students for professionally and financially rewarding careers. (more)

Posted on Jun 19, 2011 READ MORE

Flickr / shiladsen

The Rise of the Five-Year Degree

The average length of time spent earning a bachelor’s degree has been steadily rising among American university students for the past 30 years, and the change is not entirely explained by a consideration of part-time and returning students, an economist says. (more)

Posted on May 20, 2011 READ MORE

AP / Bret Hartman

When Protest Becomes a Crime

Is rudeness a crime, punishable by prison? Yes, says a district attorney as he pursues the prosecution of 11 Muslim students who disrupted a speech by the Israeli ambassador.

Posted on Feb 15, 2011 READ MORE

Chris Hedges: ‘Death of the Liberal Class’ on Book TV

Author, journalist and Truthdig columnist Chris Hedges takes his bracing argument from his latest book, “Death of the Liberal Class,” about the takeover of U.S. liberal organizations and institutions by the corporate state, to Powell’s Books in Portland, Ore., in this Book TV clip.

Posted on Feb 8, 2011 READ MORE

AP / Chitose Suzuki

The Elites Are Having a Tea Party

Taxes are the best weapon against the kind of self-perpetuating Ivy League elitism so despised by the tea party.

Posted on Nov 11, 2010 READ MORE

Arizona Superintendent Gets Taken to School

CNN is rarely the forum where we hear thoughtful points of view, but Georgetown professor Michael Eric Dyson breaks the mold as he rips apart the befuddled superintendent of Arizona public schools, Tom Horne, over Arizona’s decision to ban ethnic studies.

Posted on May 14, 2010 READ MORE

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