higher education

Today, more Americans graduate high school and go on to college than ever before. But as the country becomes more diverse — the Census Bureau expects that by 2020 more than half of the nation's children will be part of a minority race or ethnic group — are colleges and universities ready to serve them?

Dr. Bob Davies, Murray State University

Murray State University's Spring commencement ceremony is Saturday and as the traditional academic year comes to a close there is much attention and focus on the next year. Performance funding goes into effect over the summer and state officials have recently outlined broad reforms that could potentially shape education at all levels. On Sounds Good, Matt Markgraf speaks with MSU President Dr. Bob Davies about these topics, also a new fast-track law program partnership and the recent Missouri Valley Conference decision.

Two years ago, when Amanda Gomez could not get financial aid for community college, she decided to enroll part time at El Paso Community College in Texas. This gave her time to work to pay for her courses.

Being a part-time student has its pros — mainly a lighter course load. But Gomez feels like she misses out on some important experiences, like being able to stay back after class to talk to her instructors, or study in libraries on campus.

She says the difference was notable when she took a semester as a full-time student.

Dr. Bob Davies, Murray State University

The Spring semester is coming to a close at Murray State University and work is underway on establishing the next academic year. The Board of Regents recently approved an increase in tuition and fees for 2017-18. A tighter budget for the next year is also in its final weeks of crafting. MSU announced a Provost and VP for Academic Affairs and is considering changing athletics conferences. On Sounds Good, Matt Markgraf speaks with President Dr. Bob Davies about these things and more.

President Trump's updated executive order, the one restricting travel from six Muslim-majority countries, is blocked for now.

But administrators at Northeastern University in Boston aren't taking any chances.

"We're in a state of limbo," says Mike Armini, who oversees government relations. "We don't quite know what's going to happen next, so we've advised them to stay here," he says, talking about the 250 Northeastern students from those six countries.

For-profit colleges have faced federal and state investigations in recent years for their aggressive recruiting tactics — accusations that come as no surprise to author Tressie McMillan Cottom.

Matt Markgraf, WKMS

Murray State's 2017 Presidential Lecture centered on the theme "We have a dream. Are we living it?" with personal experience and insight from three alumni discussing diversity efforts in higher education.

Brian Jackson, 123rf Stock Photo

Proposed legislation that would institute performance-based funding for public universities and community colleges is now on its way to the floor of the Kentucky House. But that's not without an unsuccessful effort Tuesday to make changes in the budget committee.

Dr. Bob Davies, Murray State University

In a two-part conversation on Sounds Good, Matt Markgraf speaks with Murray State President Dr. Bob Davies, recapping some of the takeaways from the Board of Regents meeting last Friday. In the first part, they discuss the status of free speech on college and university campuses and Davies thoughts on free speech at Murray State. They also talk about the budget planning process for the next fiscal year and how the university is navigating a budget reduction of $4.5 million as it relates to enrollment and tuition. In the second part, they discuss the experiential learning EDGE Center, the Center for International Business and Trade in Paducah and why this year's Presidential Lecture has a focus on diversity in higher education. 

Matt Markgraf, WKMS

Murray State University President Bob Davies kicked off the Friday Board of Regents meeting with the quote, "The hope of democracy depends on the diffusion of knowledge," which is carved above the grand doors of Pogue Library, where the meetings are held. 

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