Higher Education News

What Happens When Sex Harassment Disrupts Victims’ Academic Careers

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 6, 2017 - 9:16pm
People who say they’ve been harassed also speak of ripple effects and lasting consequences — personally, professionally, and for their disciplines.
Categories: Higher Education News

Building a Coalition to Fight a Sea Change

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 6, 2017 - 7:09pm
Old Dominion University can’t ignore the issue of sea-level rise, which is right on “our back door,” says its president.
Categories: Higher Education News

Confronting History on Campus

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 6, 2017 - 4:04pm
Campuses are littered with buildings and monuments named for alumni, past presidents, and former professors. Problems arise when their fame is overtaken by changing mores. Here's how some colleges are trying bridge that divide.
Categories: Higher Education News

Are Colleges Engines of Inequality?

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 6, 2017 - 2:49pm
Higher ed still doesn’t provide enough opportunity to needy students. Here’s a look at some causes of that phenomenon, and what colleges might do better.  
Categories: Higher Education News

‘I Love You,’ Big U. of Virginia Donor Told Harvey Weinstein

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 6, 2017 - 12:51pm
Paul Tudor Jones II, who has given nearly $50 million to the university and serves on the board of a center there, told the embattled film producer that talk of his serial sexual harassment would be soon “forgotten,” The New York Times reports.
Categories: Higher Education News

Rising Waters, Threatened Campuses

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 6, 2017 - 9:59am
As the climate changes and seas swell, here’s how four universities — urban and rural, from Virginia to California — struggle to become more resilient in the face of an unprecedented crisis.
Categories: Higher Education News

Is Protesting a Privilege?

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 5, 2017 - 5:28pm
A study finds that protests against racial microaggressions are likelier at elite colleges, and asks why.
Categories: Higher Education News

After 10 Years in Court, a Student-Loan Whistle-Blower Fights His Last Battle

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 5, 2017 - 4:31pm
Jon Oberg was an Education Department researcher nearing retirement when he discovered that student lenders were improperly pocketing millions of dollars. Thus began his unexpected final act.
Categories: Higher Education News

Welcome Students! Need a Checking Account?

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 5, 2017 - 3:00pm
A growing number of institutions are making deals that help connect banks with students. The banks — and the colleges — make money. But do students come out ahead?
Categories: Higher Education News

Moody’s Downgrades Higher Ed’s Outlook From ‘Stable’ to ‘Negative’

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 5, 2017 - 1:15pm
The credit-rating agency cited muted growth in tuition revenue and “uncertainty at the federal level over potential policy changes.”
Categories: Higher Education News

Very Special Student Artists Display Vision, Imagination in VSA Exhibit at U.S. Department of Education

U.S. Department of Education Blog - December 5, 2017 - 1:03pm

Seventeen-year-old Keevon Howard has mastered one cardinal rule laid down by his high school art teacher, one that resonates beyond the classroom. “Don’t erase,” his teacher counselled — accept the mistake and weave it into your composition. Coping is a vital life skill, she said, so whatever you put on the paper, that’s what you deal with.

Keevon was at the U.S. Department of Education (ED) headquarters in Washington, D.C., for the opening of the 13th annual VSA exhibit, a joint project of ED and the Department of VSA and Accessibility at the Kennedy Center. His collage is on display at ED through December, along with the works of other students with disabilities from five countries. The opening, and the panel discussion, “Changing Lives Through Arts Education,” drew artists and their families, ED staff, representatives from VSA and the Kennedy Center, and arts educators and advocates.

“You can express yourself better with art than with words,” the Rhode Island teen said. In his collage, light and dark scraps of newsletter are crowded around the heads of a nuzzling mother and child. “The dark surroundings symbolize all of the problems in the world,” he explained.

Amid the chaos, however, the mother and child, illuminated by yellow paint, remain connected. Keevon’s mother, Kinya Howard, said her son has behavioral issues and created his artwork during a time when the two often clashed. Struggles notwithstanding, Keevon’s bond with his mother has blossomed.

Keevon Howard and his mother, Kinya Howard, with his collage “Strength in the Face of Hardship”

The exhibit is titled “Ubuntu: Yo Soy … Je Suis … I Am … Because You Are.” A South African concept, “Ubuntu” colloquially translates to “my humanity is connected to yours.” Like Keevon’s work of art, all of the pieces in the show explore this relationship among humans via a variety of visions and of mediums. Click here for photos of the exhibit.

During the panel discussion, the hopes and goals of the student artists and people close to them came through forcefully: to develop a voice, to connect and to communicate.

“The world can be very hard and very harsh on those who are different from the mainstream,” said Jeannine Chartier, executive and artistic director of VSA Arts Rhode Island. Chartier has a personal link to her vocation; the limp with which she walks is the result of childhood polio.

Another panel member, 25-year-old Mara Clawson, a 2016–17 winner of a VSA Kennedy Center Emerging Artists with Disabilities award, has a neurogenetic disorder, as well as developmental delays. “Her first language was sign language, and we didn’t know if we’d get beyond ‘I want more,’” Mara’s mother, Michelle Marks, explained.  When Mara was about 11, however, a teacher placed newsprint and pastels in front of her, “and the world came out in an amazing conversation of stories about eggs falling out of nests and bowling pins flying,” Marks added. “We had no idea that this was inside of her.”

The artistic capacities of special education students are often underestimated, according to panel member Carmen Jenkins-Frazier, a D.C. arts teacher at the School Without Walls at Francis-Stevens. “If you have patience and your children are able to trust and understand that you are there for them, and they feel secure in your space — then anything is possible in that classroom.”

The panel moderator was Mario Rossero, senior vice president of education at the Kennedy Center. From his experience in this role and as a former arts teacher, Rossero offered these thoughts: “When students create artwork it plays a critical role in their learning, growth, development, and ability to make connections; they are often able to communicate complex ideas that would be difficult to say through other means.”

Kimberly Richey, ED’s acting assistant secretary for special education and rehabilitation services, said, “Our partnership with VSA allows us to say to all of our employees and all of our visitors every day that arts education develops knowledge for all people, no matter their differences — cultural, geographic, abilities, age, gender — and that we each have a lot to learn from the artists, not least of which is about having the courage to be creative in our life’s work.”

Following the panel discussion and the ribbon-cutting ceremony by the students, attendees reflected on what they had learned at the opening.

“I liked the focus on artists with disabilities,” Kali Wasenko, an external engagement specialist at the D.C. Commission on Arts and Humanities, remarked. Beyond demonstrating the importance of art as therapy, she added, “the exhibit is very validating of their talents as artists.”


Nancy Paulu is a writer and editor in ED’s Office of Communications and Outreach.

Chareese Ross is a student art exhibit program associate and editor in ED’s Office of Communications and Outreach.

Photo at the top: A ribbon-cutting signaled the official opening of the Kennedy Center/VSA exhibit. 

All photos are by ED photographer Leslie Williams.

ED’s Student Art Exhibit Program provides students and teachers with an opportunity to display creative work from the classroom in a highly public space that honors it as an effective path to learning and knowledge for all. To visit the exhibits or for information about exhibiting, contact Jackye Zimmermann at Jacquelyn.zimmermann@ed.gov or visit https://www.ed.gov/student-art-exhibit.

Click here for a Washington Post article on the exhibit.

Click here to find a teacher resource guide providing visual art lesson plans to engage students with disabilities.

The post Very Special Student Artists Display Vision, Imagination in VSA Exhibit at U.S. Department of Education appeared first on ED.gov Blog.

Categories: Higher Education News

8 Grad Students Are Arrested Protesting the GOP Tax Bill on Capitol Hill

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 5, 2017 - 12:08pm
“I’ve put a lot of work into this, and to have to throw that all away because some Republicans don’t like universities is really upsetting,” one student said.
Categories: Higher Education News

How Can Colleges Head Off Homegrown Extremism?

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 4, 2017 - 6:09pm
An analysis of 30 incidents looks for the key risk factors.
Categories: Higher Education News

Auditors Reviewed How UVa’s Police Prepared for White Supremacists. They Didn’t Like What They Found.

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 4, 2017 - 5:24pm
The “seeming paralysis of police” at a Friday-night march in August on the campus “undoubtedly encouraged” violence at a rally that turned deadly the following day, a report concludes.
Categories: Higher Education News

She Showed a Video in Class. Now She’s a Hero to Some, a Pariah to Others.

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 4, 2017 - 3:58pm
Lindsay Shepherd, a graduate student at Wilfrid Laurier University, was scolded by two professors and a university official for playing a clip in which the use of gender-neutral pronouns was debated.
Categories: Higher Education News

‘Fired Twice and Rehired Twice’: Union Calls Out U. of Montana’s Flip-Flop

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 4, 2017 - 2:51pm
The flagship university had told 30 instructors their contracts wouldn’t be renewed, but within hours it told them to ignore that message.
Categories: Higher Education News

The Brief Life and Undignified Death of the ‘Hillsdale Carve-Out’

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 4, 2017 - 12:42pm
As the Senate’s tax-reform bill barreled toward a vote, an obscure amendment that would have benefited just one college entered the picture. This is its story.
Categories: Higher Education News

The People Who Made a Difference in Higher Ed — for Better or Worse

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 3, 2017 - 5:00pm
They affected federal policy, campus culture, and the national conversation about education in 2017, and are likely to remain influential in the year ahead.
Categories: Higher Education News

Appointments, Resignations, Deaths (12/8/2017)

Chronicle of Higher Education - December 3, 2017 - 4:35pm
Keith L. Ross will become president of Missouri Baptist University, and Timothy W. Gordon was named vice president for student affairs at Buffalo State College.
Categories: Higher Education News


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