higher education

Meryl Rosofosky

Students at NYU's Food Studies program are studying to be professionals in all walks of life, from community organizers and journalists to food-policy experts and public health workers.

The class takes a week-long trip to New Orleans each year, which is often the first time students visit the city. Their professor goes to great lengths to connect them with authentic Louisiana experiences, but is a week enough time to overcome years of media-saturated preconceptions?  

Jimmy Delery

Using food as a way to understand the world is something your parents probably never studied in college, but it’s has become a popular discipline in the past decade. Each year, professor Meryl Rosofsky brings students from NYU’s food studies program to New Orleans for a week-long cultural immersion. We join them at Dooky Chase to hear if their preconceptions of New Orleans are being shed.

We’ll also visit the Steamboat Warehouse in St. Landry Parish, take a cooking class with Kyan Douglas, and make leftovers with Scott Gold and his enormous jar of kimchi. 

Infrogmation of New Orleans / Flickr

The University of New Orleans announced Friday that it will begin assessing all of the school’s degree programs to determine which programs should be dropped in an effort to streamline resources and cut costs, the Advocate reports.

UNO currently has 84 degree programs. A working group made up of of the deans of the five academic colleges and other university leaders will evaluate the programs to decide which to keep and which to cut.

Sergio Rivas

The Lens reports that almost 70 percent of New Orleans public high school students in the class of 2012 went on to college. That number leads the state average by two percentage points.

Data comes from the nonprofit Educate Now website. The site released data this week about high school graduation rates in New Orleans.

It wasn’t that long ago that the idea surfaced to use the power of the Mississippi River as a source for energy. But it turns out that turbines placed near New Orleans weren’t going to be that effective after all. So some smart folks at Tulane University have come up with other ideas.

 “I don’t have a warm fuzzy feeling about this,” Senate Finance Committee chairman Jack Donahue said, regarding a proposed constitutional amendment to help Higher Ed.

The House-approved measure that would have dedicated state funding for colleges and universities was shot down in Donahue’s committee late last week. Donahue, who also serves on the Senate Education Committee, said he supported the concept but was reluctant to lock up any more state dollars.

“It it’s not broken, let’s don’t try to fix it,” Senator Francis Thompson of Delhi summed up the sentiment of a majority of the Senate regarding TOPS.

TOPS isn’t broken, but many lawmakers see curbing the cost of the college scholarship program as part of the fix for the state budget. A measure that would have saved an estimated $24-million per year, by raising the standards for TOPS was argued on the Senate floor Monday.

The regional archeologist for northwest Louisiana, based at Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, is out with a book this month that examines the dynamic cultural landscape of the Caddo people and their complex connections with the greater Native American community in the Southeastern U.S.

Jeffrey Girard is the co-author of “Caddo Connections: Cultural Interactions Within and Beyond the Caddo World.” Girard says the book traces the Caddo Indians over 1,000 years and compiles a decade of the latest research.

Jason Bache / Flickr

First Lady Michelle Obama will address graduating students and their families at Dillard University’s 2014 commencement ceremony in May.

In a news release Thursday, the White House said that Dillard University was chosen because of "its legacy as one of America’s top historically black universities."

On the same day — May 10 — Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal will also deliver a commencement address at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. Liberty is a private Christian college founded by the late Reverend Jerry Falwell.

Northwestern State University president Randall J. Webb announced Friday that he will retire later this year, according to a statement from the university. Webb has served as Northwestern State's president since 1996.

In July, he will become the university's longest serving president, surpassing Victor L. Roy, who was president from 1911 to 1929.

Webb said he would set his retirement date "based on when my replacement can assume the official duties and responsibilities of the office of president."

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