CONAHEC News and Information

Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021

Several historically Black colleges and universities will receive more than $650,000 in grants to preserve their campuses as part of a new initiative announced Tuesday.

The funding for the HBCUs comes as leaders of the colleges and universities continue to advocate for additional funding nearly a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, which has threatened the survival of many already chronically underfunded schools. Details about the initiative were shared with The Associated Press ahead of the announcement.

Friday, Feb. 05, 2021

Viruses are always mutating and taking on new forms. The coronavirus has thousands of variants that have been identified. But several, including variants first found in the United Kingdom, South Africa and Brazil, are highly transmissible and have sparked concerns that vaccines may be less effective against them.

The same protective measures that have warded off the virus throughout the pandemic — maintaining social distance, wearing masks and washing our hands — are even more critical in the face of more transmissible variants.

The ‘Eeek’ mutation (E484K)

Tuesday, Feb. 02, 2021

COVID-19 case numbers have begun falling nationwide, and the same can be said at the University of Arizona, where last week's test positivity rate was 1.18% – down from 2% the previous week.

However, the state of Arizona still has the highest infection rate in the nation, and improving numbers are not a sign that people should let up on public health precautions such as mask wearing and physical distancing, UArizona President Robert C. Robbins said Monday during his weekly virtual briefing on the university's COVID-19 status.

Tuesday, Feb. 02, 2021

The University of Arizona is ramping up its vaccination efforts, vaccinating more than 800 people daily on average.

The university has vaccinated almost 6,000 people so far and administered 810 vaccinations Saturday, UA President Robert C. Robbins said Monday. The university has a drive-through and a walk-through vaccination option for people in the 1B group, especially K-12 educators and university employees.

Tuesday, Feb. 02, 2021

When the pandemic swept the nation last year, it all kinds of industries and sectors, closing restaurants and forcing many workers to work from home. But the effect on higher education was a unique disruption, and it came at a cost. Now, institutions of higher education are asking for more money in the next Covid relief package.

Colleges and universities were forced to rapidly shift instruction online last spring and residential colleges had to close their residence halls, leaving many students scrambling to leave campus in the middle of the semester. 

Tuesday, Feb. 02, 2021

One of President Biden’s first acts in office was to request the Department of Education to extend the pause on student loan payments through September. Many are urging Biden to go further by issuing an executive order canceling $50,000 from all student loan borrowers’ debt. The Biden administration has proposed several other initiatives to make higher education more affordable, including forgiving up to $10,000 in student debt and providing free undergraduate education to anyone whose family earns less than $125,000 per year.

Tuesday, Feb. 02, 2021

Everyone has been pontificating about the various temporary and lasting impacts of Covid-19 on education. It has undoubtedly accelerated the adoption of online and hybrid learning, exacerbated equity and access issues and exposed the financial fragility of many education institutions. But there’s one change that few are talking about and it very well may be the biggest and most positive change of all precipitated by Covid: the obliteration of the traditional academic calendar. 

Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021

Pima County has begun administering Phase 1B vaccinations and starting this week the University of Arizona will be the designated distribution point for the Phase 1B priority subpopulation of teachers and child care workers, including K-12 and higher education teachers and staff, as well as student teachers.

Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021

Higher education issues like student loan forgiveness, campus sexual assault policies, and pandemic financial relief promise to be prominent early policy deliberations in the Biden Administration. Attitudes no doubt in part will be influenced by the university experiences of the senior leadership: President Biden, Vice President Harris, and the 20 cabinet members. What sort of higher education background does the Biden-Harris team have?

Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021

Minnesota health officials on Monday announced the country’s first documented case of a coronavirus variant initially detected in Brazil.

The variant, known as P.1, was confirmed in a Twin Cities metro area resident who had recent travel history to Brazil. The unnamed patient was ill in the first week of January after returning from Brazil, and the sample was collected on Jan. 9, officials said.

Case investigators advised the patient to self-isolate, and have household contacts enter quarantine.