EDU news curated by Kiosk: Increasing popularity of apprenticeships …and other higher ed news

Apprenticeships on the rise

From Education Next: “Before the pandemic, the number of people starting apprenticeships had more than doubled over the previous 10 years. That progress stalled during Covid’s height, but data for 2021, the most recent available, show that apprenticeship starts had rebounded to near the 2019 peak … Even more important, apprenticeship programs have sprouted across the country in fields such as manufacturing, insurance, and banking as well as in technical fields such as cybersecurity, software engineering, and digital marketing. … If the right balance can be found … apprenticeships could be a good fit for 25 percent to 30 percent of young people in the United States.”


Trade programs — unlike other areas of higher education — are in hot demand

From The Hechinger Report: “While almost every sector of higher education is seeing fewer students registering for classes, many trade school programs are booming. … Mechanic and repair trade programs saw an enrollment increase of 11.5 percent from spring 2021 to 2022, according to the National Student Clearinghouse. Enrollment in construction trades courses increased by 19.3 percent, while culinary program enrollment increased 12.7 percent, according to the Clearinghouse. Meanwhile, enrollment at public two-year colleges declined 7.8 percent, and enrollment at public four-year institutions dropped by 3.4 percent, according to the Clearinghouse.”


More electricians needed in the clean energy workforce

From WorkingNation: “Demand for electricians is expected to grow by 7% in the 10 years ending in 2031, with roughly 80,000 openings per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.This projection was made before the Inflation Reduction Act was signed into law in 2022. … By some estimates, 100,000 green jobs were created in the first six months after the bill was signed last August. … Pacific Inside Electrical JATC (Joint Apprentice and Training Committee) in North Bend, Oregon is a union training program affiliated with IBEW Local 932. The union is trying to recruit more applicants for its electrician apprenticeship program, specifically minorities, women, veterans, and people from disadvantaged communities.”


In other news…

US campuses urged to be better neighbours

From Times Higher Education: “Campus protests over housing, crime and community well-being have besieged leaders in recent months … The University of California, Berkeleynearly lost a third of its incoming class because of persistent housing-related disputes with neighbours. … Others criticised for their approach to housing include Columbia University, which was faulted for driving up the cost of living close to its New York City base. Arizona State University, like UC-Berkeley, was blamed by its neighbours for letting noisy students get too far away from the campus. The University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University were accused of letting private developers push out low-income residents.”


Affirmative action advocates given hope despite looming ban

From Times Higher Education: “The plaintiffs in the lawsuits against Harvard University and the University of North Carolina appeared to have conceded that admissions officers could rely on student essays as a proxy for racial identification. This would allow students to write essays describing their life experiences – including the effects of racial discrimination – and admissions officers could consider that kind of information as one factor among others in whether students win admission, said one expert, former Clinton administration education official Art Coleman. Although it would represent a ‘very fine line’ in the definition of what the court would allow …  ‘there is a reasonable prospect that this court would accept that concession’.”


At many HBCUs, just 1 in 3 students are men. Here’s why that matters.

From The Washington Post: “Experts agree about one source of the downturn. By the time they are set to graduate from high school, Black male students often do not feel they are college material. The enrollment decline shows that. Meredith Anderson, the K-12 research director at the United Negro College Fund, calls it a ‘belief gap’ between what Black male students can achieve and what others, such as teachers or college counselors, think they can. … for fields such as teaching and medicine, which already are experiencing shortages, shrinking numbers of men at HBCUs could hurt efforts to enlarge the ranks of those professions. HBCUs educate half of the nation’s Black teachers and funnel more Black applicants to medical schools than non-HBCUs do.”


The ‘some college, no credential’ cohort grows

From Inside Higher Ed: “The new progress report, released today, found that the population of learners who stopped out of college without completing rose 3.6 percent between July 2020 and July 2021. That’s an additional 1.4 million people on top of the 39 million reported last year. Academic outcomes for these students also worsened. The number who returned to college fell 8.4 percent, those who earned a credential within a year after re-enrolling dropped 11.8 percent and those who continued on to a second year of college after re-enrolling fell 4.3 percent.”


Don’t fret about students using ChatGPT to cheat – AI is a bigger threat to educational equality

From The Conversation: “AI tools also perpetuate the global dominance of English at the expense of other languages, especially oral and Indigenous languages. I recently spoke with a Microsoft executive who called these other languages ‘edge cases’ – a term used to describe uncommon cases that cause problems for computer code. … From this perspective, other languages aren’t inferior to English; they just don’t make as much money as English language content.”


How the promise of free college doesn’t always help low-income students

From The Hechinger Report: “Many cover only the tuition that is still outstanding after federal aid is used up. These are called ‘last-dollar’ free college programs. Since federal aid to the lowest-income students — usually in the form of Pell Grants — almost always covers the full cost of community college tuition, low-income students don’t benefit, while higher-income students do. … What low-income students really need is help with other expenses, such as housing, books and transportation — things free college programs don’t often cover. Those essentials account for about 80 percent of the cost of attending community college, according to researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.”


Harvard and MIT launch nonprofit to increase college access

From EdSurge: “What would you do if you had $800 million to build a new nonprofit to support innovation in online learning? That’s the privileged question that officials at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University have been mulling over for the last two years … The result is a new nonprofit named Axim Collaborative, and its focus will be on serving learners that higher education has historically left behind. … The $800 million underpinning the effort derived from a controversial decision by the two universities in 2021 to sell their edX online learning platform to 2U.”


In UK Education News…

Student complaints in England and Wales reach record high

From University World News: “University students made a record number of complaints last year to the higher education watchdog in England and Wales, which expressed concern about ‘increasing levels of distress among students who are struggling to cope’, writes Sally Weale for The Guardian. The Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) received 2,850 complaints in 2022 – its highest ever number and a 3% increase on the previous year – which resulted in financial compensation of more than £1 million (US$1.2 million) in total.”





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