Campus news in the news

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FCC Key to Closing the Homework Gap

Patrick Gossman, deputy chief information officer at Wayne State University, agrees that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) should give institutions the opportunity to deploy their own networks. Equipment costs have now come down significantly, and projects such as the NMU Educational Access Network have shown it can be done, he said. Gossman said the Educational Broadband Service (EBS) is being used effectively by educators. “The only spectrum not being utilized in the United States is the spectrum that the FCC has been sitting on for over 23 years, despite all the efforts we’ve made to get them to license the unlicensed areas,” he said. Wayne State University obtained its EBS licenses in the 1960s and produced educational television programming until the 1990s. It then leased its spectrum to Sprint, which built up the necessary infrastructure in Detroit to make the 4G LTE network operational. “There was no way that I could have built a cellular 4G LTE network to blanket 38,000 square miles and four million people. It made a heck of a lot more sense to partner with Sprint and let them go through that,” said Gossman. “We lease to Sprint, but I look upon it as a partnership.”
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How ‘Game of Thrones’ Can Teach You To Be a Better Person

The eighth and final season of the HBO series ‘Game of Thrones’ begins next month on April 14. The show’s popularity has had an impact at colleges and universities, where courses in medieval studies have increased since it began airing. Closer to home at Wayne State University, assistant professor Hilary Fox’s specialty in medieval ethics and history have made her a popular lecturer among the show’s local fans. This Thursday, March 28 at HopCat Brewery, Fox will talk about the real-life historical events mirrored in ‘Game of Thrones’ plot as part of Wayne State’s ‘Knowledge on Tap’ series, which is free and open to the public.
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Roxbury's Bonstelle Theatre lease OK'd as part of boutique hotel project

The Wayne State University Board of Governors approved Wednesday a long-term lease of the to-be-decommissioned Bonstelle Theatre as part of Detroit-based developer The Roxbury Group's planned West Elm hotel project. David Di Rita, principal of Roxbury, said the 45-year lease also includes a number of options to renew and that the property would be renovated and restored with things like updated HVAC systems and interior, auditorium and finishes. A specific budget for the theater renovation project has not been calculated, but the overall effort to restore it and construct the West Elm hotel on Woodward Avenue on the edge of Midtown and Brush Park is expected to cost $50 million. Wayne State is decommissioning the Bonstelle and a building at 95 W. Hancock St. as part of the $65 million Hilberry Gateway Performance Complex project.
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Walking on Water with STEM at Wayne State

Getting students engaged in and excited about science education early is the key to help preparing them for the jobs of the future. Educators at Wayne State University are doing their part by hosting the third annual STEM Day from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on March 12. Julie Hasse, associate director of marketing and communications, and Sarah Brownlee, associate professor of geology, stopped by the Fox2 News studios Saturday morning to preview the event and to showcase a science experiment that allows one to walk on water... for a short time anyway. 
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Wayne State to roll out fast-track librarian certificate amid shortage, student demand

Wayne State University is set to offer a new experimental school library certificate to address student demand and a general shortage of certified school librarians in the state. The university plans to offer a 15-credit program through its School of Information Sciences, said Matt Fredericks, academic services officer for the school. The course load is designed to equip students with the necessary media specialist skills without requiring the typical 36-credit master's program.
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Wayne State University looking to win Gift of Life Campus Challenge again

As you're reading this, 114,000 men, women and children await lifesaving transplants. You can help make a dent in that staggering statistic with the Wayne State University's Gift of Life Campus Challenge. Wayne State is once again leading the way when it comes to getting people to sign up for the organ donor registry. Alyssa Krieger and Erin Coburn from Wayne State were in-studio guests along with organ recipient Nicholas Giannamore.
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OnlineMasters.com Names Top MBA in Human Resources Programs for 2019

OnlineMasters.com announced the release of their Best Online MBA in Human Resources Programs for 2019. The research identifies the top programs in the nation based on curriculum quality, program flexibility, affordability, and graduate outcomes. In addition to insights gained from industry professionals, OnlineMasters.com leveraged an exclusive data set comprised of interviews and surveys from current students and alumni. Each online degree program was analyzed with only 50 making it to the final list. The methodology incorporates the most recent data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and statistical data from the National Center for Education Statistics. Only programs from accredited nonprofit institutions were eligible. Wayne State University is included among the 2019 Best Master's in MBA in Human Resources Degree Programs.
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Chris Pratt gives a shout-out to Detroit's Wayne State University

Chris Pratt, the star of "The Lego Movie," "Guardians of the Galaxy" and "Jurassic World" movie franchises, just happened to send some online love to Wayne State University on Tuesday. In a video posted on Twitter and Facebook, the actor stands next to Wayne State psychology major Rachel Zelenak and says, "Hi, I'm Chris Pratt. I love Wayne State University." Pratt then pretends to be interrupted by a Sigmund Freud doll that he's holding next to his ear. Dubbed Siggy, it's the Wayne State psychology department's unofficial mascot. "Thank you, Rachel Zelenak and Chris Pratt for making everyone's day!" raved a tweet from Wayne State's official account. 
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Going back to school as an adult? Here’s what you need to know

Like roughly 40 percent of students who enter college, life got in the way of Shawnte’ Cain completing her degree. Cain, 39, began her college career in 1997 at Wayne State University. She successfully made it through three years at the school, but just as she could see her degree on the horizon, her grandmother fell ill. School fell by the wayside as Cain cared for her and her own financial obligations rose. For years, Cain, who works as a casino host at the MGM Grand Detroit, toyed with returning to college, but work and family obligations kept getting in the way. “I was finding barriers to stop me from finishing,” she said recently. But in 2018, Cain finally re-enrolled at Wayne State thanks in part to a new program at the school called Warrior Way Back, which forgives up to $1,500 in debt former students owed to the school if they return.
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Wayne State, Oakland County Health Division partnership seeks to recruit and train nurses in community health

Three Wayne State University nursing students are now serving at the Oakland County Health Division as part of a four-year partnership program. The four-year program focuses on recruiting and training nursing students and current registered nurses to practice at the full scope of their license in community-based primary care teams. “For many years, the health division has provided learning opportunities for several nursing programs that includes serving as a clinical site for WSU CoN students and faculty. Partnering with them for this program is a natural extension of our current partnership and is a first to offer such an in-depth experience with us,” said Shane Bies, Oakland County Health Division administrator of public health nursing.  According to Wayne State University, the Oakland County Health Division will take six students in a 1:1 preceptorship over the next four years. There are no faculty, but at least 10 health division registered nurses will be involved in the program. The partnership began in October 2018, according to Dr. Ramona Benkert, associate dean for academic and clinical affairs and associate professor at Wayne State University. Three WSU students are currently working at the health division; one in the children with special needs department, one in the maternal child and nurse partnership program and one in the STI communicable diseases clinic.
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A few lessons about public-private partnerships

It has been more than a decade since a report by the Institute for Higher Ed Policy first noted a worldwide shift away from public funding sources and toward private capital to finance higher education projects. The report appeared just months before the eruption of the global financial crisis that left an indelible scar on state and local public finances still seen today. The long-term effects of that crisis have only reinforced the logic that made private capital an attractive financing option in the first place. The cold, hard fact is that available public funds for higher education have been shrinking. Wayne State University sought out private partners for a project to demolish an existing 407-bed apartment building and replace it with new and renovated residential space. It went from issuing a request for proposals to obtaining financing in relatively record time and began leasing new beds in August 2018. To expedite construction, the private partner secured bridge financing as part of the overall capital stack, enabling the project to tap into generally favorable financing for the larger private placement of debt. The university not only locked in favorable financing terms and paid off existing debt, but it also moved much of the worry and risk from operations onto the private partner by engaging in a full P3 (public-private partnership) approach. That includes design, construction, financing, operations and maintenance of the project over a 40-year life cycle, freeing up university resources to focus on academic and other needs.
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Economy is booming, yet middle-class American workers still struggling

 Right now, the United States is facing the second longest period of economic expansion since the end of World War II, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research. That means business has been surging with increasing economic output. If this continues a few more months, it will surpass the longest boom from 1991 to 2001. Other measures suggest the economy has never been better. The unemployment rate hit a 49-year low of 3.7 percent late last year. The stock market, measured by the Dow Jones Industrial Average, has been hitting record highs, above 26,000. And the inflation rate, is low, at about 2 percent. "All those things together should suggest that people should be pretty content," said Marick Masters, a business professor at Wayne State University. "But, at the same time, there are structural problems in the economy which remain."
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Opinion: Devastating costs of government shutdown

Marick F. Masters, professor of business, wrote an op-ed about the fallout from the government shutdown. “Although the country finally gets a three-week break from its longest government shutdown, an increasing number of Americans had felt some of the pain immediately inflicted on the 800,000 federal employees, 420,000 of whom were working without pay. The funding gap forced many governmental offices to close, delayed important services, idled federal contractors and their employees, and inconveniences many who awaited approvals for loans, patents, tariff exceptions, and civil litigation. The shutdown cost billions in disrupted economic activity and expensive make-shift arrangements made to adjust to massive furloughs. But the real costs are much deeper and corrosive.” Masters notes that lost wages of furloughed employees reduce consumer spending, which is a key driver of economic activity; literally thousands of routine government operations are interrupted, delaying important transactions which await government approval; slowdowns in food inspections, environmental regulation enforcement and the provision of health care put many at risk, threatening public health and safety; and there is a further erosion in the already low level of confidence in government and democratic institutions.
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Big college vs. small college: How to choose the right one

When your child imagines his or her ideal college, does it feature a sports arena packed with thousands of cheering student fans – or a small classroom where every professor knows your name? The big college vs. small college decision can be as important to some students as choosing a major. The size of the school can affect a student’s entire experience. Many of the biggest colleges in Michigan are in populated city centers, like Wayne State University in Detroit. “There is lots of culture – museums, pubs, craft beer places – near campus, and we’re just a few miles down from Comerica Park, Little Caesars Arena and Ford Field,” says, “Having roughly 27,000 students here is part of the reason why the university is such a hub of activity and fun.” 
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Colleges delay tuition, offer aid as shutdown hits students

A growing number of colleges and universities are postponing tuition payments, waiving late fees and providing emergency grants to students whose finances have been tied up by the longest government shutdown in history. Most of the offers come from schools along the East Coast and other areas with heavy numbers of federal employees, including Denver and Detroit. “We wanted to make sure students knew early on we were right there beside them,” said Dawn Medley, associate vice president of enrollment at the public school of 27,000 students. “Maybe they need rent money or money for transportation. We can help with that.” 
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Here’s how Wayne State nearly doubled its graduation rate in six years

Federal data show that Wayne State University has the fastest-improving graduation rate in the nation among public universities with more than 10,000 students. In fact, the percentage of students who earned a degree within six years of enrolling at Wayne State nearly doubled from 2011 to 2017, jumping from 26 percent to 47 percent, according to the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System. While Wayne State’s graduation rate increased by 21 percentage points in six years, national graduation rates have increased only two percentage points over the last decade. Wayne State’s emphasis on boosting graduation rates began in earnest in 2011, when it launched a Student Retention Initiative. Over the next five years, the university invested more than $10 million in student success projects. “The core of the initiative was an overhaul in academic advising, which has led to proactive, individualized advising driven by state-of-the art technology and comprehensive professional development,” says Monica Brockmeyer, senior associate provost for student success. 
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WSU has lowest law school tuition, high success rate

Thinking about going to law school in Michigan? Wayne State University is worth a look. An investigation by the USA Today Network looked into passage rates for the bar exam at U.S. law schools, including those in Michigan. The network looked at each school's share of 2015 graduates who passed the bar within two years. The data shows that of the five law schools in Michigan, Wayne State University Law School has the lowest annual tuition, $31,956, but one of the highest rates for students passing the bar — 96 percent. 
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How the shutdown affects tuition payments and loans

Normally, colleges do not allow students to attend classes if they miss a tuition payment, and payment plans carry fees. But a handful of colleges - including Connecticut State Colleges and Universities, the Nevada System of Higher Education Institutions and Wayne State University in Michigan - have publicly told students they can stay in college and delay tuition payments without paying penalties. Dawn Medley, associate vice president of enrollment management at Wayne State University, said she fears that if students are not granted tuition relief, they will drop out. That is why Wayne State, in Detroit, has delayed tuition payments for government workers with financial needs, put them on payment plans, provided emergency loans and waived fees. There are families that can’t just cough up $6,000 when they do not know when the paycheck will arrive, said Medley.
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Microsoft to provide Wayne State University with tech jobs training curriculum

Microsoft has taken a greater interest in Detroit of late. Last year, the company moved its regional headquarters downtown, and Microsoft-owned LinkedIn secured a permanent office downtown as well. This month, Microsoft and Wayne State University announced that they will team up to improve job prospects in the tech industry by providing its Microsoft Professional Program curriculum free of charge. "Student success and employability are tied together," said Wayne State University Provost Keith Whitfield. "We want our students to reach their graduation day, and we also want them to have great jobs to go to the following week. Moreover, we want the businesses and industries in Detroit and Michigan to view our graduates as integral to their growth and success."