College Offers Popular Classes for Wealthier Students; Wal-Mart, Starbucks Top Employers of Youth
Better Classes for the 1 Percent. Santa Monica College has become the first public school to raise tuition rates for students enrolling in popular classes. The plan, which was recently approved by the school’s governing board, will result in students being charged up to $200 per unit for popular classes like English and math. Students are currently paying $36 per unit, but even that rate is expected to increase slightly by next semester. Some have praised the plan for being innovative at a time when public schools are struggling with funding. Critics, however, argue that the plan creates a two-tier education system in which students are inadvertently segregated based on class. “Struggling working-class and low-income students will be competing for the scraps of what’s left,” said student government President Harrison Wills. “It’s definitely a move in the wrong direction.” [LA Times]
Unemployed or Poorly Employed. It’s no secret that the unemployment rate for young Americans has been devastating, but the situation isn’t much better for those who have managed to find jobs. According to a new report, an increasing number of people in their 20s are being employed in areas that do little to further their careers. Wal-Mart, Starbucks, Target, and Best Buy are four of the top five employers of young Americans. The report also indicated that more young people are finding their way into food service, as more employees in this industry have high school and college degrees than at any point in history. [Washington Post]
Do Ask, Do Tell. In an effort to provide better resources for LGBT students, the University of California could ask all incoming freshmen to declare their sexual orientation. The question will not be asked on applications to the schools because students may feel uncomfortable answering in front of their parents. “Sexual orientation is a part of diversity and cannot be ignored,” said Robert Anderson, chair of the Academic Senate. Many LGBT students favor the proposal as it could lead to more benefits for their community. Lawrence Pitts, provost of the UC system, will ultimately have the final say on whether this new policy is implemented. It is unclear when he will make a decision.[ABC News]
Hazing Indictments. Nine men have been indicted in a fraternity hazing case after allegedly beating two pledges at Youngstown State University so severely that they ended up hospitalized. The two sophomores told authorities they were beaten with fists, paddles, and wire clothes hangers. The nine men, most of them former students, were each charged with two counts of felonious assault. The university responded to the indictments by suspending the fraternity for 15 years. The charges come on the heels of high profile hazing incidents at several schools, including Florida A&M.[Washington Post]
Graham White is a journalism intern for Campus Progress. You can follow him on Twitter @GrahamWhiteNY.