This week we began National Hispanic Heritage Month, and at Innovative Educators we want to ensure we honor this month as a time for reflection, learning and celebration of the diversity across the Latinx community. More than 62 million Americans are Latinx which represents over 18% of the United States population. In 2019, 21.7% of undergraduates were Latinx, the second largest ethnic group enrolled at the undergraduate level.
Last week President Biden announced national measures to address COVID. Among those efforts includes an emergency rule requiring private-sector employers with 100 or more employees to require workers to be vaccinated or to be tested weekly for COVID. Federal contractors will also have to mandate vaccines; many private and public colleges are federal contractors. It’s unclear how many institutions will be impacted by these new policies particularly in the 18 states that ban proof of vaccination requirements.
"Higher ed is not a bundled-type of market. That's their challenge. How can they do cross selling in higher ed, which doesn't naturally reward that?" - Phil Hill, partner at ed tech consulting firm MindWires.
A big news story in EdTech this week. Anthology announced it was merging with Blackboard, the LMS provider. Industry experts list Anthology as the third-biggest higher ed administrative technology company behind Microsoft and Ellucian. As a unified company, they serve more than 4,000 colleges and universities worldwide. The combined entity is likely to be among the sector's biggest educational technology firms.
Community College Daily reports this week on initiatives to expand mental health services for community college students. Institutions like Holyoke Community College have partnered with local mental health services to provide support for students. Faculty and staff will also receive training through the partnership to better recognize students who may be in distress. In West Virginia, a grant provided the opportunity to provide West Virginia Northern Community College’s students free, online therapy and resource referrals through WellConnect. Connecticut’s community college system has entered into an agreement with TimelyMD. Every Connecticut community college student will have access to an on-demand mental health support system, unlimited health consultations, and up to 12 scheduled individual counseling sessions per year.
Listen to our recent Friday 5 Live podcast with the University of Wisconsin-Milkwaukee team that is guiding their institution’s trauma-informed approach to the 2021-2022 academic year.
Data released this week by the National Center for Education Statistics provides an early look at how the pandemic has impacted staffing, finances and enrollment at U.S. colleges and universities. The Chronicle reports on three major takeaways from the data. Public colleges experienced a significant loss of revenue from auxiliary services. Four year institutions saw auxiliary sales fall 12.5% while two year institutions saw a 15.1% decline. The data also concludes that first-time freshmen enrollment was down significantly with two-year colleges seeing the sharpest decline. Adjunct instructors bore the brunt of staffing cuts with some institutions eliminating over half of their part-time teaching staff.
Looking to learn more? These upcoming webinars may be of interest:
September 17, 2021