By Omari Burnside, August 14, 2017
One of the things we keep hearing at NASPA is that despite the great work happening at institutions, there is always a need and a desire to do more. Questions like, “How can we increase the number of students served by the program?” “How can we encourage more staff and faculty to engage in the effort?” “How can we offer a greater variety and breadth of offerings to appeal to more students?” all relate to scale. In this post NASPA Research and Policy Institute's Director of Strategic Initiatives, Omari Burnside, provides guidance to student affairs professionals on achieving "scale" on campus.
By Matt Carter, August 10, 2017
While President Trump’s proposed budget has set the Perkins Loan Program to expire advocates turn to Congress to push new legislation through before the September 30 cutoff for the program to sunset. In 2015 Congress the Perkins Loan Program expire but then restored the program two years later. As of now, the bipartisan Federal Perkins Loan Program Extension Act of 2017 has picked up 77 cosponsors, including 18 Republicans, but still may not move forward due to House education chairwoman Virginia Fox’s focus on a “one grant, one loan” program through the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA).
By Clarice Silber, August 10, 2017
Arizona recently overturned a 2015 court decision determining eligibility for state benefits, including in-state tuition for DACA recipients. In response, Arizona Board of Regents President Eileen Kiein sent a letter to the state attorney general’s office stating that ending in-state tuition for DACA recipients would have “a devastating impact on hundreds of innocent young people.” Public universities have declared that they will not stop offering in-state tuition for Dreamers and the Maricopa County Community College District Board said it will ask the Arizona Supreme Court to overturn this latest ruling.
By Jack Stripling, August 13, 2017
University President, Teresa Sullivan, was unable to estimate the magnitude and severity of white nationalist protests this past Friday according to an accounting of events to a colleague over dinner. Anticipating a protest in the middle of campus, specific residents were taken into a basement area with an escape route, but the mob-like protest with torches ablaze and three resulting deaths were impossible to predict. Ms. Sullivan instructed visiting prospective students and their parents that the University of Virginia campus was no longer a safe area to be in, and took her team to a building on the edge of campus which served as the Emergency Operations Center. Ms. Sullivan also pushed back against criticism that she did not named the white nationalists, "It seems to me that there were underlying themes that are more important than the labels given to those groups," she said. "If you listen to the chants, these were chants about killing people because of what groups those people were born into, or killing people because of their beliefs." "The country is badly polarized, and people want to look at what’s happening at the universities and put it into that narrative: It’s red or its blue," she said. "But that is not what’s going on here; that’s not what happened here. What happened here is infrared and ultraviolet; it’s beyond the spectrum of normal political discourse. Both Republican and Democratic elected leaders denounced what happened here. Seeking to normalize this as ordinary politics is the mistake. What happened here yesterday wasn’t about ideas," she continued. "People weren’t out there arguing with each other. They were clobbering each other. That’s a very different situation. That’s violence. Violence is not free speech.”
By Elizabeth Redden, August 14, 2017
Ten Republican attorneys general have now announced intent to file a lawsuit against the Trump administration if the DACA program has not been rescinded by September 5. Nearly 100 immigrant law professors have signed onto a letter to President Trump stating, "In our view, there is no question that DACA 2012 is a lawful exercise of prosecutorial discretion, our conclusions are based on years of experience in the field and a close study of the U.S. Constitution, administrative law, immigration statutes, federal regulations and case law."
In the past few weeks we have seen a rising debate in Texas through the anticipated re-introduction of anti-trans legislation in the July Special Session. Special Session is scheduled to start on July 18 and bills TX HB 46 and TX HB 50 have been filed. These bills mimic failed legislation HB 2899, a slightly more lenient form of the original TX SB 6 Bathroom Bill. TX HB 46 would forbid “political subdivisions, including a public school district” from adopting or enforcing measures to “protect a class of persons from discrimination” in regulating “access to multi-occupancy restrooms, showers or changing facilities.” HB 50 is identical except applying only to a school district board. In the past few months other states have retreated from the conversation. So far, 16 states have introduced bathroom bills during the 2017-2018 state legislative sessions. Legislation has failed in AL, AR, KY, MT, SD, VA, and WY. TX HB 46 and TX HB 50 were read for the first time in Special Session on 07/20/2017. Special Session ends on 8/16/2017 so it looks like at this time the bills are unlikely to move forward.
In the past few months, we have seen 11 states consider 18 pieces of anti-sanctuary legislation that would affect college campuses. 6 states have introduced (pro) sanctuary legislation that extends to college campuses. Of this legislation, 9 pieces have failed, and 15 are pending, and 4 have been enacted. PA HB 14 was removed from the table on 06/22/2017. CA SB 54, a statewide sanctuary bill is in Assembly and was amended and passed the Committee on Judiciary and was re-referred to the Committee on Appropriation on 07/10/2017.
Guns on Campus:
Upwards of 17 states are considering legislation concerning guns on campus during the current session. In the 42 pieces of legislation the Policy and Advocacy Team is tracking, 18 bills are pending, 20 have failed, and 4 have been enacted, in AR, GA, and OK. GA HB 280 went into effect on 07/01/2017. CA AB 424 was ordered to a second reading by the Committee on Appropriations on 07/10/2017.
*Congress is in recess during the month of August
Comments or questions? Send us your feedback!