College

Children play as festival organizers chat with the handful of college students at the Regional Chamber's new festival Saturday morning, Aug. 27, 2016.
Camille Phillips | St. Louis Public Radio

A college outreach event organized by the St. Louis Regional Chamber got off to a slow start Saturday.

The business association held a new festival downtown to introduce college students to what St. Louis has to offer off campus. The hope is that more of them will stay in the area after they graduate if they get to know the region.

Karen Levin Coburn first wrote "Letting Go: A Parent's Guide to Understanding the College Years" in 1988. It has has been rereleased four times since.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

It’s that time of year again: kids are heading back to school … unless they aren’t and are instead breaking new ground on a college campus. While this time in a young adult’s life can be scary, it also holds significant fears on the part of the parent.

Danielle Washington of the Wyman Center walks Ozzie Furlow through financial aid literacy training at St. Louis Graduates' High School to College Center. Furlow plans to enroll as a freshman at Arkansas Baptist in August 2016.
Camille Phillips | St. Louis Public Radio

When Ozzie Furlow graduated from Hazelwood East High School in June, he planned to attend Missouri Western State University in the fall.

But there was a problem.

“They wanted me to be part time, and I have nobody to stay (with) down there,” Furlow said.

BYU-Hawaii Enactus students hold their 2015 championship trophy.
Enactus | provided

Updated May 19 with winning team — The La Sierra University Enactus team was chosen as the 2016 National Champion.

Two thousand college students from all across the country are in St. Louis through Tuesday for a socially-minded business competition called the Enactus National Expo.

The Enactus university teams are the winners of their regional expos and are competing for the title of national champion by presenting their projects to corporate executives who evaluate the impact of their work.

The columns at the University of Missouri-Columbia.
St. Louis Public Radio file photo

State higher education funding per full time student has dropped more than 26 percent in Missouri and increased almost 50 percent in Illinois over the past five years, according to data compiled by the State Higher Education Executive Officers Association.

The stark contrast between the states is due in part to an almost 29 percent variance in enrollment trends; Missouri enrollment has gone up while Illinois enrollment has gone down.

But Illinois Higher Education Director James Applegate said his state has also drastically increased its higher education funding in order to pay pension shortfalls.

Cornell University political science professor and author Suzanne Mettler talks to 'St. Louis on the Air' host Don Marsh on March 16, 2015, at St. Louis Public Radio in St. Louis.
Alex Heuer / St. Louis Public Radio

Millions of students are enrolled in college, but graduation rates are uneven. Why? Author Suzanne Mettler says political squabbling is to blame.

Mettler, a political science professor at Cornell University, has written a book that lays out the problem and its solution: “Degrees of Inequality: The Demise of Opportunity in Higher Education and How to Restore the American Dream.”

Field of students at a graduation
j.o.h.n. walker | Flickr

As a junior in high school, Ayont Young figured she’d go to Missouri State University to study nursing. It was the only college she’d looked at and she was sure she could get in. Then, she signed up for College Summit’s summer Peer Leader program.

College Summit is a local answer to the lack of academic support and resources in some communities nationwide. Program leaders encourage their students to reach higher and work harder – while giving them the support they need to do so.

Illinois Holds College Financial Aid Workshops

Feb 2, 2014
Illinois Student Assistance Commission

Illinois governor Pat Quinn has announced free workshops across the state for college students and their parents to get advice on acquiring financial aid. The workshops will be conducted throughout February, which is Financial Aid Awareness Month.

Experts with the Illinois Student Assistance Commission will help families understand and complete the commonly-used FAFSA, or Free Application for Student Aid.

Regional Chamber

In an effort to attract employers and investors, the St. Louis Regional Chamber wants to add 75,000 college graduates by the year 2025, pushing the area into the top 10 nationwide in college attainment.

The first time Janet Martinez started college, she was right out of high school in Oklahoma. By her own admission, she was not quite ready for the responsibility involved: too many decisions, too much social life.

“It was all too much for me,” she says. She left after one semester.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: At the start of Thursday’s regional education summit to determine the best way to help more St. Louis area residents earn college degrees, Danny Ludeman stepped to the microphone, took off his jacket and rolled up his sleeves.

That pretty much summarized the message of speakers for the next five hours: Everybody involved – from education, business, government, civic groups and others – needs to get down to work quickly if they want to meet a goal of having the area move into the top 10 nationwide in college degrees by the year 2025. It is now ranked 14th.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon:David Letterman isn’t the only one paying attention to Top 10 lists.

The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has been working for a while on its Top 10 by 20 initiative, a push to bring the state into the leaders in educational achievement by the year 2020.

Check out this story from our own Adam Allington which aired on Marketplace Morning Report today.

(via Flickr/j.o.h.n. walker)

A new audit finds major problems in the College Illinois tuition savings program, including possible financial conflicts among top personnel.

Auditor General William Holland reported Wednesday that the former executive director of College Illinois did not disclose conflicts of interest. And another official made a $500,000 investment with an investment manager that was applying to handle the program's money.

(Alex King/St. Louis Public Radio)

This weekend's NCAA Wrestling Championships at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis sold out for the first time in the event's 82-year history. The event is expected to break its all-time attendance record with over 110,000 fans in attendance.

This is the sixth year St. Louis has hosted the tournament. NCAA associate director of championships Jeff Jarnecke says St. Louis is a great place to host the event.

Scottrade secured the naming-rights for the home of the National Hockey League's St. Louis Blues in 2006.
.bobby | Flickr

The St. Louis region is kicking off what the St. Louis Sports Commission is calling its version of "March Madness." Beginning with the Missouri Valley Conference men's basketball tournament this weekend, the area will host four straight weeks of college sports tournaments.

The region will also host the MVC women's basketball tournament from March 8-11 at The Family Arena, the NCAA Division 1 wrestling championships from March 15-17 and the NCAA Division 1 men's basketball regional on March 23 and 25.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Missouri college students and staff are being asked to donate a weekend or a holiday this semester and take part in ongoing relief efforts in Joplin.

On May 22, the southwest Missouri city was devastated by a massive tornado that killed more than 150 people.  A campaign called “Show Me U Care” is recruiting groups of students, faculty and staff from college campuses across Missouri to travel to Joplin and help rebuild homes and provide other needs.

(via Wikimedia Commons)

Mo. state auditor Tom Schweich says contracts between five state universities and former presidents may not be in the best interest of the schools, and some may violate provisions of state law.

(Courtesy Atchison County 911/Emergency Management on Facebook)

Levee Break Sends Releases Torrents of Water

Crews are racing to build up a protective wall to keep floodwaters from reaching a small Iowa town after the swollen Missouri River punched a massive hole in the main levee that protects the community.

Two levees in northwest Missouri ruptured yesterday, sending water over rural farmland.