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Highlights from Higher Ed: New Opportunities for Health Professions, Advice for “Frantic” Applicants and “Good Jobs” for Recent Graduates

Liaison’s founder and CEO addresses higher ed’s “historic opportunity”

In light of the fact that “89% of college and university presidents are concerned about the overall financial stability of their institutions, and 88% worry about declines in overall enrollment” George Haddad, Founder and CEO of Liaison, recently called on higher-ed institutions to recognize the need to educate and train more students in the health professions.

According to Haddad, who authored an opinion piece on the Inside Higher Ed web site: “Higher education possesses a historic opportunity in regard to populating the health professions. Just as Sept. 11 is believed to have boosted military enlistment and inspired greater admiration for first responders, coronavirus is spotlighting the contributions of nurses, epidemiologists and other health and science professionals who are working on the front lines of the pandemic… During the next 10 years, that will mean a diversion of investments away from several sectors of the economy and into health care. Fields such as nursing, biomedical sciences and behavioral health, and the academic programs that feed them with new professionals, are poised to prosper in this environment.” He concluded by saying, “This historic opportunity awaits if colleges and universities step forward to seize it.”

Source: Inside Higher Ed

Hundreds of admissions deans collectively offer advice to “frantic” applicants

Three hundred and forty college admissions deans have signed an open letter offering advice “to frantic applicants experiencing personal hardship, scaled-back academic courses and lost opportunities due to the Coronavirus pandemic.” The overall theme of the letter is that students should “be gentle with themselves during this time.” More specifically, the deans encourage students to focus on self-care, academic work, service to others, family and extracurricular/summer activities. “No student will be disadvantaged because of a change in commitments or a change in plans because of this outbreak,” the letter said. “We will also view students in the context of the curriculum, academic resources and supports available to them.”

Source: The Boston Globe

Fewer than one-third of recent grads had a “good job” waiting for them

Only 30% of recent college graduates said they had a “good job” awaiting them after graduation, although the definition of “good” varies significantly depending upon whom you ask. According to a Gallup survey, 25% of recent U.S. college graduates said a good job is characterized by its pay, 22% cited “mission and purpose” and 17% said the “ability to learn new skills” makes a job good. Regarding the length of time it took to find a good job, nearly one in five (19%) replied, “Not applicable because I was not seeking employment upon graduation.” Seventeen percent said it took more than one year, 14% said it took three to six months and 12% said it took two months or less.

Source: Gallup

Pandemic could hurt schools that rely heavily on out-of-state students

Students’ desire to attend college closer to home in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic “stands to hurt institutions that rely heavily on out-of-state enrollees.” Overall, 70% of states get at least 20% of their students from other states. “Public colleges are more likely than private institutions to gain more from the shift, which comes as recruitment intensifies and colleges’ fall plans remain unclear.” In 2018, “more than one-third of first-time students in New Jersey, Hawaii, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Vermont attended college out of state… Those states in particular could benefit from more students attending college in their home state.” Public institutions, including community colleges, are likely to be the beneficiaries of new enrollment trends. “Community colleges, in particular, stand to benefit — and not only because they tend to cost less. Students who may have otherwise gone to a four-year university are more likely to enroll in a community college than stop out altogether.”

Source: Education Dive