New Research: Is College Worth It?


Apprentices learn how to plaster at a trade school in Auburndale, Massachusetts.

A recent Pew Research Center report reveals that economic outcomes for young adults without a four-year college degree have been improving over the past decade, with increased earnings and reduced poverty rates. Despite these gains, the income gap between those with and without a college degree remains unchanged as young college graduates have also seen improvements in their economic situations. Public opinion on the value of a college degree is mixed, with only 22% of U.S. adults believing that the cost of college is worth it if loans are necessary. Many Americans question the necessity of a college degree for securing a well-paying job, with 40% asserting that it is not very important.

The report highlights that the labor force participation and full-time employment rates for young men and women without a college degree have stabilized or increased after decades of decline. For young men, earnings have risen since 2014, though they remain below early 1970s levels, and poverty rates have significantly decreased. Similarly, young women without a degree have seen their earnings increase and poverty rates fall over the past decade. However, four-year college graduates continue to...

Dear Colleague Letter: S-STEM Scholarships for Students


The official NSF logo

The National Science Foundation's Directorate for STEM Education (EDU) invites current ATE program recipients to submit requests for supplemental funding to support scholarships for students eligible under the NSF Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Program (S-STEM). This initiative aims to address the ongoing high attrition rates among STEM undergraduates in the U.S. by providing financial assistance to academically talented, low-income students pursuing degrees in STEM fields.

Supplemental funding requests should focus exclusively on student scholarships and must meet S-STEM eligibility criteria, including U.S. citizenship, enrollment in a STEM program, academic potential, low-income status, and demonstrated financial need.

Detailed instructions for preparing these requests are provided on the NSF website, including requirements for institutional context, potential scholars' demographics, retention and graduation rates, scholarship amount determination, and existing support structures. Funding will not exceed 20% of the original ATE award and must be submitted with prior NSF approval.

For further guidance and to initiate the submission process,...

Upcoming Deadline: Metallica Scholars Initiative


The logo for Metallica's All Within My Hands Foundation

The American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) is partnering with Metallica's All Within My Hands Foundation for the Metallica Scholars Initiative, an effort to promote career and technical education as a pathway to well-paying jobs. This initiative supports community college students by providing relevant job skill training and connecting them to opportunities that meet employer needs. The collaboration leverages Metallica's influence to elevate the importance and dignity of technical education. 

AACC is now accepting proposals from up to 18 member colleges for Cohort 6, starting on July 1, 2024. The Request for Proposals opened on May 15 and closes on June 7, with announcements the week of June 24.

Since its inception in 2019, the Metallica Scholars Initiative has expanded to 42 colleges across 33 states, supporting student accessibility through scholarships and essential resources. For updates, follow AACC and All Within My Hands on their respective platforms.

Upcoming Event: STEM Educator Solar Institute


A photo of participants at the Summer STEM Solar Institute

Educators looking to effectively and engagingly teach solar principles in their classrooms can join the STEM Educator Solar Institute in Madison, WI. This unique opportunity is designed to equip participants with the knowledge and tools needed to bring solar energy concepts to life for their students.

At the Institute, attendees will gain hands-on experience with the tools of the trade by installing and commissioning a residential-sized solar photovoltaic (PV) array. They will learn and practice essential safety measures and electrical principles, ensuring thorough preparation to handle and teach these technologies. In addition, participants will engage in ready-to-use, hands-on classroom lab activities, which can be implemented immediately in their own teaching environments.

The STEM Educator Solar Institute will be held from July 9-11, 2024, at the Commercial Avenue Campus in Madison, WI. Sessions will take place both indoors at Madison College’s Commercial Avenue campus and outdoors in the solar photovoltaic training yard. This immersive experience includes two nights of hotel accommodations in downtown Madison, along with breakfast and lunch each day, allowing participants to...

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NSF Celebrates 74 Years of Innovation


The graphic logo for the NSF celebration of 75 years

On May 10, the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) proudly commemorates its 74th anniversary, celebrating over seven decades of groundbreaking advancements in science and technology.

Since its establishment in 1950, NSF has been a beacon of support for visionary ideas and transformative innovations spanning the spectrum of scientific and engineering disciplines.

Next year, May 10, 2025, NSF will celebrate 75 years of innovation and discovery. In honor of this momentous occasion, a year-long series of events and activities will unfold across the nation, spotlighting the profound impact of NSF-funded research on society and the economy. From new insights into the natural world to fostering technological breakthroughs that shape lives, NSF's contributions have been integral to driving progress and enhancing understandings of the world.

Stay tuned for on the NSF website for updates and invitations to participate in the festivities for 75 years of scientific excellence.

High School CS Classes Lead to More Degrees


Several students looking at computer monitors

A recent study conducted in Maryland demonstrates the significant impact of high-quality computer science courses in high schools on students' career trajectories and diversity within the field.

Led by Jing Liu, an assistant professor at the University of Maryland, the study found that students who took such courses were 10 percentage points more likely to major in computer science in college and 5 percentage points more likely to complete a CS degree program. Particularly noteworthy was the positive effect on underrepresented groups, including females, Black students, and those from low socioeconomic backgrounds, indicating progress in addressing disparities in the tech industry. Despite these advancements, challenges remain in broadening participation and ensuring teacher qualifications.

While 57% of U.S. high schools offer introductory computer science courses, efforts like Maryland's statewide requirement for high schools to offer high-quality computer science courses highlight the need for broader participation and improved teacher training. Additionally, addressing the shortage of qualified teachers remains a significant hurdle, requiring strategies to motivate and...

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Upcoming Event: NICE Conference & Expo


The graphic logo for the NICE and NIST Centers

The National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) is proud to announce the upcoming NICE Conference & Expo: Strengthening Ecosystems, scheduled from June 3rd to June 5th, 2024, at the Sheraton Dallas. This three-day event will serve as a platform for cybersecurity stakeholders to converge, collaborate, and address the pressing need to bridge the cybersecurity workforce gap.

With the theme "Strengthening Ecosystems: Aligning Stakeholders to Bridge the Cybersecurity Workforce Gap," the conference underscores the collective endeavor required to fortify the cybersecurity landscape. By uniting with key partners, participants will delve into strategies and initiatives aimed at fostering a more resilient cybersecurity ecosystem.

Supported by NICE, a program of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) under the U.S. Department of Commerce, this conference represents a significant opportunity for professionals, educators, policymakers, and industry leaders to exchange insights, best practices, and innovative approaches in cybersecurity workforce development.

Registration is now open, with regular registration available until May 14, 2024, or until capacity is...

Deadline: ATE Future Leaders Fellows


The graphic ATE Future Leaders Fellows logo

Don't miss out on the Request for Applications for AACC's brand-new ATE Future Leaders Fellows program. AACC is calling for applications from professionals at two-year colleges who are members, aiming to boost their leadership abilities and contribute to a nationwide effort in STEM technician education and capacity building.

Supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) under its Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program, this innovative initiative offers ATE community college professionals the chance to join the AACC John E. Roueche Future Leaders Institute (FLI) or Future Presidents Institute (FPI). They will also act as program ambassadors, promoting awareness of the STEM technician education field and showcasing the opportunities and resources provided by NSF ATE funding.

The ATE Future Leaders Fellows program is committed to cultivating community college leaders equipped with the skills to foster relationships with businesses and industries, enhance STEM capacity, and promote a culture of innovation on campus, preparing students for the evolving world of work.

To learn more, visit The deadline to apply is April 30, 2024.

Google Discontinuing Universal Analytics


A graphic orange logo for Google Analytics

Google Analytics has announced that starting July 1, 2024, Google Analytics 4 will fully replace Universal Analytics. As a result, all Universal Analytics services and APIs will be discontinued. This change will render Universal Analytics properties inaccessible through the Google Analytics platform and its APIs. Users who haven't transitioned to Google Analytics 4 are advised to consult the migration guide to initiate the switch as soon as possible.

Data Preservation To retain access to Universal Analytics data, it is crucial to download or export it immediately. Data not exported through the methods provided in the Google Analytics Help Center will be permanently deleted and cannot be recovered. For those utilizing the BigQuery integration for Universal Analytics 360 historical data, it is recommended to commence this process without delay.

Impact on Product Integrations With the discontinuation of Universal Analytics, various services and functionalities tied to it will cease to operate. This includes Universal Analytics goals, ecommerce transactions, and audience lists. Ad campaign performance may be affected, especially if Smart Bidding and media activation are in use....

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All of Us Research Hub Summer Institute 2024


A screenshot of the All of Us website

The National Institutes of Health is launching the All of Us Research Hub Summer Institute from June 25 to 28, 2024, at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. This groundbreaking program aims to involve over a million people across the US as research participants, creating one of the largest and most diverse datasets ever compiled for health research. Guided by principles of diversity, transparency, and accessibility, the All of Us Research Program offers this data to the public and researchers at all career stages, including students. The goal is to foster an inclusive and diverse research community, inspiring the next generation of scientists.

The Summer Institute will engage participants in a sample research project using the All of Us dataset and educate students on how to utilize the Research Hub for their own research inquiries. Before the Institute, participants must complete an asynchronous learning module introducing the All of Us Research Program and guiding them through dataset registration.

Who should apply? US community college instructors teaching biology, genetics, anatomy, biotech, health, or research methods courses. Benefits include $1,125 participation...

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