higher education

The Florida House is pushing for $164 million in budget cuts in its initial higher-education budgets.

Under a plan outlined by the House Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee on Monday, universities would see a $110 million cut, while state colleges would face $61 million in reductions. Small increases in other higher-education programs, including workforce education and private colleges, lowers the proposed net reduction to $164 million.

Rowan Moore Gerety

When Yomaira Hidalgo set out for an associate’s degree taking classes at ITT Tech three nights a week, it didn’t take long to unravel the precarious routine she shared with her husband, her mother and three young children. In a word, she says, it  was “miserable.”

The IRS Data Retrieval Tool is down.

If those words don't send a shiver up your spine, it means you're not a high school senior or college student rushing to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA.

The FAFSA is the form — famously complicated and difficult to finish — that stands between many low-income students and the federal, state and institutional aid they need to pay for college.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

Over the last 16 years, the vast majority of community colleges in Florida have expanded to become state colleges. That's so they can offer four-year degrees, not just the two-year associate degrees.

Now Florida lawmakers are considering a bill that limits those expansions. And that move comes just as the smallest college in the state system, Florida Keys Community College, is taking its first steps toward offering four-year degrees.

The Florida Senate has voted on a plan that will bring sweeping changes to the state’s higher-education system.

House Raises Questions About University Funding

Mar 8, 2017

Laying the groundwork for a more austere higher-education budget, the House Appropriations Committee on Wednesday heard more than three hours of testimony on university spending and the use of foundations by the schools.

Committee Chairman Carlos Trujillo, R-Miami, said that over the past decade, state funding for the 12-university system has increased by $1.4 billion.

"Do we really think, and there are 30 members of this committee, it is lack of funding? Or do we really think it might be some misappropriation of money?" Trujillo told reporters after the meeting.

Roberto Koltun / Miami Herald

A massive higher education bill became the first real piece of legislation heard by the full Florida Senate Wednesday.

The legislation would, among other things, change how the performance of state colleges and universities is calculated, something that according to critics would benefit of more traditional four-year universities.

New rankings released by U.S. News and World Report say Florida is the number one state in the nation for higher education.


There's an experiment underway at a few top universities around the world to make some master's degrees out there more affordable.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, for example, says the class of 2018 can get a master's degree in supply chain management with tens of thousands in savings. The university's normal price runs upwards of $67,000 for the current academic year.

Florida's public universities are being swamped by college students who need counseling.


A Senate plan for changes to the state’s public colleges and universities sailed smoothly through its first panel hearing Monday. Questions mostly centered on how schools could implement block tuition and use a four-year graduation rate as part of the state’s higher ed accountability system.

Florida's incoming Senate President Joe Negron is laying the groundwork to revamp the state's Bright Futures scholarships program, which is funded by the state lottery.

When the Obama administration announced last year that it would overhaul the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, prospective college students (and their parents) cheered.

"Today, we're lending a hand to millions of high school students who want to go to college and who've worked hard," said Arne Duncan, who was at that time U.S. secretary of education. "We're announcing an easier, earlier FAFSA."

And it is both.

ITT Tech materials, courtesy of Waltter Teruel

Before he moved to Miami, Waltter Teruel sold antiques and life insurance in New York. Working as a recruiter at ITT Technical Institute in Hialeah was a welcome change. “I mean, if you’re a salesperson, you have to lie through your teeth,” he said, “but in this case, it’s one of the sales where you actually don’t have to lie at some point.”

Regency Beauty Institute has joined the list of for-profit school closures.

The national cosmetology school closed all 79 of its locations, including one in Tampa.

On its website, Regency cited several reasons for closing.

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