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Though he isn’t from Franklin County, it has a sense of familiarity for Ferrum College’s new president Joseph “Jody” Spooner. Spooner, who is coming to the college from Yale University, was raised on a farm in Florida, so he feels right at home in the rural community where the small, private liberal arts college is located.
Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran is not making a lot of plans as she leaves Kalamazoo College. She will catch up on reading, watch a few movies and spend time in North Carolina, where she taught for years and was acting president of Salem Academy and College in Winston-Salem, N.C., before joining Kalamazoo College in 2005. She also hopes to spend more time in Nigeria, the homeland of her husband Olasope Oyelaran and a country in which she lived and taught for about 14 years, in the 1970s and 80s. Wilson-Oyelaran, who became the first woman and first African-American president of Kalamazoo College in July 2005, will retire from that leadership role on June 30.
Georgetown University President John J. DeGioia pledged a vigorous and wide-ranging effort to make amends for the Jesuit school’s 1838 sale of 272 slaves. DeGioia announced in February that the university is moving to expand its faculty in African American studies and establish a research center focused on racial injustice.
The Wayland Baptist University board of trustees have voted to name longtime administrator Bobby Hall as the university’s 13th president, effective July 1. Hall succeeds Paul Armes, who will retire at the end of June after more than 15 years as Wayland’s president.
Given all that has happened on so many campuses over the last few years, it’s hard to pick the one that has been roiled the most by struggles over political correctness. But Oberlin College would certainly be in the running. Students at Oberlin and their counterparts elsewhere might not behave in such an emboldened fashion if they did not feel so largely in charge. Their readiness to press for rules and rituals to their liking suggests the extent to which they have come to act as customers — the ones who set the terms, the ones who are always right — and the degree to which they are treated that way.
Joanne Berger-Sweeney, Trinity’s president since July 2014, wants to reinvent how the private college is run. She believes liberal arts colleges must adapt to new demographic and fiscal realities. Many are finding there are limits to how much tuition revenue they can generate to cover fixed expenses.
A new campaign at Rochester Institute of Technology called “It’s Time to Ex-Out Extremism,” is gaining international attention. Seventeen students worked all semester to create a social media campaign to combat radical extremism, and now the U.S. State Department has invited them to go to Washington to officially present it.
But even though Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin centers on the public flagship in that state, Harvard’s policy on race and admissions remains very much part of the larger legal battle. Cited repeatedly in the case files, Harvard filed its own “friend of the court” brief in Fisher to support the status quo. It also is the target of a separate lawsuit pending in federal court in Massachusetts that alleges the university engages in unlawful discrimination in admissions against Asian American applicants. The university has denied that allegation.
The board of St. John's College on Friday announced that it has approved a new governance plan for the Great Books institution with campuses in Annapolis, Md., and Santa Fe, N.M.
The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools has put four small private colleges and one community college on notice, mostly due to financial problems.
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