The March earthquake and tsunami in Japan devastated parts of that country and shook the economy around the world. It did not, however, shake the resolve of several Kentuckians who are headed to Japan this weekend to start new jobs. The Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program hires English-speaking college graduates to teach in Japanese public schools. Adrienne Ledbetter is from Bowling Green and is headed to a city near Mt. Fuji that recently faced a food crisis after authorities found radiation-tainted beef.
The University of Louisville has doubled the power of its supercomputer. When it was installed in 2009, the Cardinal Research Cluster was 21 teraflops, meaning it could do 21 trillion calculations per second. Most home computers aren’t measured in flops, but rarely exceed a ten thousandth of that power. Now the cluster is 42 teraflops. It’s used for cancer research and the new capacity will be used for pediatric cancer and environmental research.
Starting in late August, all students in grades 5-12 in the Owensboro school system will get laptop computers. The school system purchased 2,200 of the Apple Macbook Air laptops. Each cost about $1,000, according to a published report in the Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer.
FRANKFORT — Gov. Steve Beshear Thursday announced Kentucky has been awarded $1 million to fuel policy innovations and reforms aimed at significantly transforming remedial education. The grant is provided by Complete College America as part of its national Completion Innovation Challenge grant competition. Kentucky will use its grant funds to enhance developmental education opportunities for adults who enroll in the Learn on Demand online program offered through the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS).
Eastern Kentucky University and Somerset Community College have made the Chronicle of Higher Education's annual list of great places to work in academia. The list was compiled by anonymous surveys of workers at 310 institutions and included evaluations of features including leadership, careers and compensation. The Chronicle survey identified 111 colleges and universities across the country as superior workplaces. While EKU and Somerset were the only Kentucky schools to make that list, Hazard Community College, Murray State University and Transylvania University were recognized in individual categories.
Kentucky State University President Mary Sias got a glowing annual review and a raise at Friday’s meeting of the Board of Regents. Chairwoman Laura Douglas said the regents were impressed in particular with Sias’ participation on national boards and committees, her handling of the budget and students’ academic achievements.
With the students in the U.S. falling behind in math and science, teachers are hoping to learn new ways to rekindle interest in the subjects, and nearly 1000 teachers have gathered in Lexington over the past few weeks to do just that. The National Assessment of Educational Programs recently found only 33 percent of eighth graders are proficient or advanced in math. Likewise, math and science teachers are becoming harder and harder to come by. For the past couple weeks, a program called Laying the Foundation has been training teachers, mostly from Kentucky, to better prepare students for the rigors of Advanced Placement courses.
This coming school year, for the first time, the Kentucky Department of Education will require public high school students to take end-of-course tests in certain basic courses, measuring what they've learned. The tests will be required for students taking English II, Algebra II, biology and U.S. history. The national ACT testing organization will provide the exams. Test scores will be figured into Kentucky's accountability system, which measures schools' progress in moving students toward proficiency.
As area building projects have ground to a halt over the last few years, Danville's Centre College has only seemed to pick up the pace of property acquisition and new development. Most recently, the college purchased the Hope Street properties long occupied by Boyle County Stockyards, which has already been razed, and Farmers Tobacco Warehouse Number 1, still in the demolition process.
Mayor Greg Fischer and University of Louisville President James Ramsey celebrated on Wednesday the beginning of construction for a new building in the Nucleus Innovation Park. “We’ve got a new research park here. It’s going to be a hot spot of collaboration and innovation and of course a spot where many, many jobs are going to be created,” said Fischer.
Josette Taylor learned a lot in her first year at the University of Louisville, but it doesn’t begin to compare with what she learned during her summer break. Taylor, a 2010 graduate of Washington County High School, traveled this summer with International Student Volunteers and spent a month in South Africa.
The data on default rates of student loans doesn't look favorable for Maysville Community and Technical College. But Dr. Ed Story, president of MCTC cautions the data isn't official yet and Kentucky Community and Technical College staff are working with the U.S. Department of Education to verify the official default rate for MCTC. "Even if it's close to that, we're not very happy with it," said Story of a recent news article that indicates MCTC has a 29 percent three-year default rate on student loans.
More money is needed, but, Kentucky’s First Lady says at-risk students also need creativity. Jane Beshear, who was in Richmond today for a conference on at-risk students, says teachers need to think outside the box. Beshear called on educators to be more creative.
With a new president at the helm, the University of Kentucky will pay a Chicago-based consulting firm $285,000 to re-examine the school's long-term goals — set during rosier financial times — and suggest efficiencies. Results from the study conducted by Huron Consulting Group will be considered during a UK Board of Trustees retreat with new president Eli Capilouto in October.
Some University of Kentucky professors are questioning whether former President Lee T. Todd Jr. needs a campus office that will cost as much as the median price of a house sold in Central Kentucky. Renovations for Todd's office in UK's Advanced Science and Technology Commercialization Center Building will cost $143,828. The median sale price for a house in Central Kentucky was $145,000 in June.
The Appalachian Youth Challenge Academy will open in July 2012 in Harlan at a former elementary school. The program will take volunteers between 16 and 18 years of age. Youth Challenge targets at-risk teens and teaches them life skills and physical fitness - all in a 22-week program in a military-like atmosphere.
The University of Louisville Board of Trustees has recommended a raise and bonus for President James Ramsey. For the past three years Ramsey has declined his bonus because the university was unable to provide staff with raises. This year, faculty and administrators will receive raises between zero and five percent based on merit.
Like most juvenile crimes, cybercrimes are often the result of peer pressure. An article in this week’s American Journal of Criminal Justice concludes kids who commit cybercrimes usually have friends who also commit cybercrimes. Researchers surveyed 435 students in a suburban Kentucky school district. Helping with the study was Doctor David May, a professor of Criminal Justice at Eastern Kentucky University. May, who spoke with WEKU’s Charles Compton, says they studied four forms of internet crime.
A newly formed Early Childhood Advisory Council will help Kentucky create policies, standards, and goals which should improve the education given pre school children.
26 people have been named to a state council charged with seeking ways to improve early childhood education. They were named today (Tuesday) in an executive order issued by Kentucky's governor. Former C-E-O of United Way of Kentucky Terry Sims Tolan will direct the brand new Early Childhood Advisory Council. Tolan says consistency of care is the highest priority.
Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear has taken steps to apply for federal education grants from the Race to the Top program. The commonwealth is eligible for a portion of the $500 million that will be made available later this year. Like the previous round of Race to the Top grants, states must put together lengthy applications for the money.
The Kentucky Transportation Center and the Army Corps of Engineers are joining forces to make sure Kentucky's waterways are being used to their full potential. While the collaboration isn't unique, it does represent a new approach to tackling old problems. Long before highways, Kentucky's rivers served as vital means of transportation. Today, Joe Crabtree, director of the Kentucky Transportation Center, says, when it comes to shipping freight, water still has its advantages.
Kentucky's national education ranking has risen more dramatically than virtually any other state since 1990. That's according to the Index of Educational Progress prepared by researchers at University of Kentucky. The index combines multiple educational attainment and achievement factors. Kentucky climbed from 48th in 1990 to 33rd in 2009. Only one other state (North Carolina) advanced out of the bottom 10 with double-digit gains.
On a day that marks the end of an era for the U-S Space program, students, staff, and interested onlookers at the University of Kentucky gathered to watch the launch. They were in a room designed to give them a feel for what’s happening at NASA. Just minutes before the final launch of the space shuttle in Florida, everyone jammed inside a simulator modeled after mission control in Houston. Senior Jason Rexroat offered some insight to prospective students, while other eyes focused on the simulator's television monitors and live coverage of a real space flight
The new leader of the state's flagship university says he wants to meet with as many people, in as many departments, as quickly as possible. As Alan Lytle reports, the school's administration is doing its best to make that happen. New University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto continues to make the rounds getting to know the school's students, faculty, and staff.
Several federal and state elected officials have joined together to support Eastern Kentucky University’s bid to host a debate during next year’s presidential campaign. A package sent by university officials to the Commission on Presidential Debates includes strong letters of support from Democratic and Republican leaders, namely U.S. Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, U.S. Rep. Ben Chandler, state Sen. President David Williams and state House Speaker Greg Stumbo.
A Lexington archaeologist has received a grant from the National Geographic Society to advance his search for a "lost city" in Honduras. Christopher Begley, an associate professor of anthropology at Transylvania University and director of the Exploration Foundation, will use the research grant and 3-D technology to examine ancient artifacts in the Honduran rainforest, near the Mosquito Coast. The area is the rumored location of a lost city from ancient times.
Frankfort area school officials may host forums this fall to explain the state’s new testing system to the public. Members of the Franklin County and Frankfort Independent school boards discussed that possibility Friday during a joint meeting to discuss possible collaboration and attend training on the new system.
A new era begins this week at the University of Kentucky. President Lee Todd, who served as UK president for a decade, has cleaned out his office and went into retirement.
Lee Todd brought his engineering background to the office of president at UK. Throughout his tenure Todd urged college researchers to branch out into the private sector and involve themselves in start-up firms. Todd also argued a key ingredient to such economic growth is graduating students with more proficiency in math and science. Todd says progress depends on training better math and science teachers who have with better classroom skills.