May 11 – Higher education round up

Two short higher education-related items today.

First, the Texas Tribune reports U. S. Department of Education data reveals only five of thirty-two public universities in Texas have graduation rates higher than 50%:

Of the 32 Texas state universities tracked by the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics, only five schools have self-reported graduation rates above 50 percent. The University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M University have the highest graduation rates: Both graduate 78 percent of their students in six years or less, but that’s still a step behind national peers like the University of California-Los Angeles and the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, which graduate 90 percent and 88 percent, respectively. At the bottom of the Texas list is Texas Southern University, which graduates just 12 percent of students in six years, followed by the University of Houston-Downtown and the University of Texas at Brownsville, each at 16 percent.

Next, the Huffington Post describes a recent episode of PBS’ Frontline that examined for-profit colleges.

Graduates [at one] for-profit school — a college nursing program in California — tell FRONTLINE that they received their diplomas without ever setting foot in a hospital. Graduates at other for-profit schools report being unable to find a job, or make their student loan payments, because their degree was perceived to be of little worth by prospective employers. One woman who enrolled in a for-profit doctorate program in Dallas later learned that the school never acquired the proper accreditation she would need to get the job she trained for. She is now sinking in over $200,000 in student debt.

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