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AKA Review
July 28, 2023
At AKA, we closely follow trends and latest developments
in higher education and the nonprofit sector.

Here are some recent articles and reports that we found particularly informative.
From Education Next:
By Clark G. Gilbert and Michael B. Horn
Far too many college students fail to graduate, losing out on the benefits of a college degree and facing increased debt without increased earnings. The authors argue that flipping the script to ensure students earn a job-ready certificate in their first semester or year not only gives them immediate value in the labor market but also a greater likelihood of eventually earning a degree. They describe how structuring them as a sub-component of a bachelor’s degree helps increase retention and greater faith among students in the value of reenrolling if they do take time off. Read this article
From Inside Higher Ed:
Liam Knox
While the recent SCOTUS decision only explicitly addressed admissions, law firms and third parties, like Students for Fair Admissions, are deluging colleges and universities with arguments that the ruling’s scope extends to financial aid, recruitment, and data-collection practices that consider or identify race. This is likely to have wider-reaching impact, as such activities are employed by the vast number of institutions that are nonselective and do not use affirmative action. Although the many unknowns in the Supreme Court decision suggest only caution, it seems likely that the near future will see an onslaught of lawsuits from aggrieved students and empowered firms that see an immediate opportunity for large settlements. Read this article
From Politico:
Charlie Mahtesian and Madi Alexander
Nationwide, fast-growing, traditionally liberal college counties are generating higher turnout and growing Democratic margins, playing a pivotal role in turning several red states blue. This in-depth article thoughtfully explores the multiple factors driving the college-town trend, noting its particularly powerful impact when combined with heavily Democratic cities, blue-trending suburbs, and the population growth of both. Highlighting traditional GOP responses—efforts to limit student voting rights, redrawing maps to dilute the power of college towns—the authors emphasize that such suppression does nothing to grow the GOP vote or address the structural challenges of increased college-town votes, of which students are only part of the phenomenon. Read this article

From STAT:
How a Boston Hospital is Priming Medical Residents for an Era of AI Medicine
Brittany Trang and Katie Palmer
To prepare for the bigger role AI models like GPT-4 will potentially have in clinical practice, Boston Beth Israel Hospital asks medical residents to test the limits and potential of AI in diagnostic reasoning. This engaging description of one such workshop illustrates the value of GPT-4 less as a diagnostician than a thought partner to an experienced physician stumped by a difficult case. One resident, acknowledging the tool’s skills, emphasized that AI couldn’t replace the doctor’s role for the many patients who just want to be heard, and commented, "But maybe if I use this, I can free up more time for them."  Read this article
From The Atlantic:
Why the Remote-Work Debate Stays So Heated
By Lora Kelley
Rationales for calling people back to work are often mushy. Despite debates over productivity and company culture, argues the author, people’s positions on returning to work are intensely personal and tied to their age, finances, child-care demands and commute time—and frequently different from workers who fall elsewhere on these axes. Even with data now emerging on this poorly analyzed subject, personal experiences are what most color different perspectives. Recognition of these experiences will help us both understand the intensity of the debate and resolve it. Read this article

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