Posts Tagged ‘President Obama’

College News Roundup

Up-to-date college news from this week:

College Student Pleads Guilty to POTUS Threats

A 20-year-old student at Miami-Dade College pleaded guilty this week to posting threating messages about President Obama to Facebook. Joaquin Amador Serrapio Jr. might end up getting 5 years in prison for the threats. According to the AP:

“In the first post on Feb. 21, Serrapio said: “Who wants to help me assassinate Obummer while hes at UM this week?”

Then on Feb. 23, the day of Obama’s visit, the Secret Service said Serappio posted a second threat.

“If anyones going to UM to see Obama today, get ur phones out and record. Cause at any moment im gonna put a bullet through his head and u don’t wanna miss that! Youtube!” the message said.

Someone who saw the posts contacted the Coral Gables Police Department and the Secret Service dispatched two agents to Serrapio’s home, where Serrapio and his mother agreed to allow a search. There they found an iPad with one of the Facebook postings on it and a cell phone with a text message from one of Serrapio’s friends who had seen the messages.

“LOL you can get in trouble for sayin’ that,” the text said.

Serrapio replied that he was “challenging” the Secret Service and also issued threats against any agents who came looking for him.

“I wanna kill at least two of them when they get here,” Serrapio said in that text.

Investigators said the only weapons Serrapio possessed were two pellet guns. He was originally charged with threatening the agents as well, but prosecutor Seth Schlessinger said that charge will be dropped.

Serrapio said during the hearing he had just completed his second year of college. He declined through Ross to comment outside court.

Senator Franken Introduces Standard College-Aid Letters Bill

Senator (and former SNL star) Al Franken (D-MN) and eight co-sponsors are introducing a bill to simplify the financial aid process. Under this bill, Colleges would have to send all students their financial aid information in a standard letter so that families would be able to evaluate their options in a simple and understandable way. According to Bloomberg:

“Colleges send letters to students they’ve accepted outlining costs, scholarships as well as loan information. The letters are often confusing and fail to differentiate clearly between awards and the money a student might need to borrow to cover tuition and other expenses. There is no federal requirement to disclose interest rates or total loan payments as there are for other types of loans such as mortgages.

The bill would establish information that must be included such as the cost of attendance, the net amount a student is responsible for paying after subtracting grant aid, expected federal loan monthly repayment amounts and disclosures related to private loans, according to the statement.”

Any news going on your college campus? Share in the comment field below!


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President Obama ‘Slow Jams’ College-Related News on Jimmy Fallon

As Jimmy Fallon called him, the “Preezy of the United Steezy” gives probably the only “slow jam” an American president has ever given on national television where he talks with a chill steady beat about keeping the interest rates low on Stafford Loans to help students afford college.

The best part of it all? When The Roots, Fallon’s house band, sang:’ “If congress doesn’t act, it’s the students who pay; the right and left should join like Kim and Kanye.”

Watch the whole Slow Jam the News here:

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The State of the Union, The State of Your Education

Following tonight’s  State of the Union, President Obama will begin a series of speaking events across the country, traveling to Iowa, Arizona, Nevada and Colorado tomorrow and Thursday before arriving in Michigan on Thursday evening at the University of Michigan.

We need not skirt the issue that this is an election year, and of course the President must do what he must do to secure votes–especially in Michigan–but considering his speaking events concern higher education, well, then they should be considered.

So, what is the President going to chirp about?

Well, we’ll hear about it in the SOTU, but if we were to guess what Obama was going to say about education, it would probably be along the lines of affordability. He’s been hitting the issue fairly hard lately, especially since his election campaign is focusing on a middle-class message. In fact, Obama released a webcast last week that hinted at the SOTU’s content. Parts of that speech suggested that it would modeled on December’s Kansas speech that focused on “getting people the education and training they need so they’re ready to take on jobs of today and tomorrow.”

You can see in our previous posts that Obama has been revving up his focus on college costs. For instance, in December he met with college leaders to discuss tuition affordability. Why is this such an important issue? Well, on top of it being an election year, college tuition is rising faster than inflation! With budget and funding cuts, public universities are losing their funding flexibility. Many public universities are looking for out-of-state students, who pay higher tuition, to balance the books. On top of this, student-loan debt is estimated to be $1 trillion.

So, sshhyeeeah. President Obama has a lot of ground to cover in terms of higher education. And if he can resolve even a portion of the issues at hand…well, I’m sure some college-bound students would be happy to extend their vote to him.

What’s your take on the affordability issues? If you were in power, how would you solve the problem?

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