Coronavirus News Roundup for April 9

Everything you need to know for Thursday about higher ed and the coronavirus in one easy-to-read package (with some distractions to help your sanity).

April 9, 2020
 
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The novel coronavirus continues to upset our worlds. But it's possible we're getting closer to a vaccine, as those who had the virus donate their blood and plasma for research.

In possibly more disturbing news, apparently we are all having the same nightmares, fueled by anxiety around COVID-19.

To ease that anxiety, here are some palate cleansers.

First, a roundup of funny memes and videos to ease your mind.

Here's a nice rhyme to send your would-be Passover Seder guests during this time.

And, if you're bored, here's a handy guide to at-home bird watching.​

Let’s get to the news.

New York is on a roll. Andrew Cuomo, the state's Democratic governor, announced New Yorkers who have private student loans will get some relief, including the ability to defer their loan payments for 90 days. Advocates have called for Congress to extend some of its federal student loan relief conditions to private borrowers, but that wasn't included in the $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief package.

The City University of New York has started an emergency relief fund for students who are struggling because of COVID-19. It hopes to eventually raise $10 million for the fund and will initially give $500 each to 14,000 students.

Law graduates who can't take the July bar exam because of the coronavirus may still be able to practice law. The American Bar Association's Board of Governors passed a policy resolution urging state licensing authorities to let recent graduates practice in a limited capacity.

Here’s a quick roundup of our latest stories, in case you’ve fallen a bit behind (we don’t blame you):

Institutions are changing how much they weigh students' evaluations of instructors due to the ongoing health crisis. Doug Lederman explores what that could mean for the common tool.

Many colleges have agreed to offer dorm room space for first responders to the coronavirus pandemic. This can require them to clean out students' belongings -- which doesn't always go smoothly, Greta Anderson reports.

In the midst of all this, an annual survey from the American Association of University Professors found that faculty pay is flat, as it has been for the past few years, Colleen Flaherty reports.

Scott Jaschik wrote about another study that found minority enrollment decreases at colleges in states where affirmative action is banned.

News From Elsewhere

Education Dive has a piece on online proctors, which are in high demand now that higher education has gone virtual.

The National Association of Student Financial Aid and Administrators wrote about expected budget cuts in states, including cuts to higher education.

The pandemic-induced recession is hitting the higher education industry unevenly, according to The Chronicle of Higher Education. Small colleges are particularly concerned.

Percolating Thoughts

This is a time when everyone has an opinion. As journalists, we try not to have opinions, but we've gathered some interesting ones from others.

The president of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities makes the case for a national coalition aimed at retaining at-risk students and building digital infrastructure.

Experts from the Lumina Foundation ask institutions to not "waste a crisis" in a Higher Learning Advocates publication.

A professor and a dean discuss how to teach labs online in the age of coronavirus.


Have any percolating thoughts or notice any from others? Feel free to send them our way or comment below.

We’ll continue bringing you the news you need in this crazy time. Keep sending us your questions and story ideas. We’ll get through this together.

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