Obituaries - Fall 2020 | News Center - UNLV NewsCenter

Obituaries - Fall 2020 | News Center - UNLV NewsCenter Obituaries - Fall 2020 | News Center - UNLV NewsCenter Posted: 08 Nov 2020 12:00 AM PST Stephen Brown Brown, professor of economics and former director of the Center for Business and Economic Research, died May 6. He joined the Lee Business School in 2010 as professor and the center's director. Several years later he took a position in the department of economics as a full-time professor, teaching courses in public finance and economic development, and doing research in energy economics. He was senior editor of the international academic journal  Energy Policy  and a University Fellow at Resources for the Future, a nonpartisan Washington, D.C.-based think tank that specializes in energy, environmental, and natural resource economics. Felicia Campbell Campbell, UNLV's longest-serving faculty member, died July 27 of complications related to COVID-19. A member of the English d

Here’s A Look At The Impact Of Coronavirus (COVID-19) On Colleges And Universities In The U.S. - Forbes

Here’s A Look At The Impact Of Coronavirus (COVID-19) On Colleges And Universities In The U.S. - Forbes

Here’s A Look At The Impact Of Coronavirus (COVID-19) On Colleges And Universities In The U.S. - Forbes

Posted: 30 Apr 2020 02:29 PM PDT

Nearly every aspect of normal life has been affected by the spread of coronavirus and its associated disease, COVID-19. Businesses of all different sizes and industries of all different sorts have been significantly impacted. Layoffs and furloughs have soared, with unemployment reaching levels not seen since the Great Depression. Household finances have been thrown into uncertainty as breadwinners have lost their jobs. And while banks and lenders have offered financial relief options, many are now curtailing these options as they must keep an eye on their own risk.

One huge area that COVID-19 is impacting and sowing major confusion is in higher education. Colleges and universities have been thrown into very uncertain waters as they are forced to convert to online-only courses while struggling with a myriad of other issues, especially in the realm of finances. We asked college professors and administrators, counselors, higher education consultants and many other experts in the field of higher education for their views on how COVID-19 is impacting colleges and universities, both currently and in the longer-term. Read on to find out what the effects of COVID-19 have been like for colleges and universities and what the future holds for higher education in the wake of this crisis.

The Effects of Coronavirus (COVID-19) on Colleges and Universities

As with COVID-19's impact on the affiliate marketing industry, its effects on colleges and universities are multifaceted and quite complex. Whether it is in the area of applications and admissions, tuition, student loans or teaching, COVID-19 is making a substantial, and perhaps, lasting impression on colleges and universities.

Challenges and Opportunities

"COVID-19 has forced all of us to reimagine how we delivery an engaging and holistic learning experience for students. While it presents its challenges, it is also a massive opportunity to break out of old habits and create new, impactful, relevant modes of learning that take advantage of technology and this moment," said Gaidi Faraj, dean of African Leadership University. "An unintended consequence of this pandemic is that high education will become significantly more accessible as universities think about how to move all of their programming online, including counseling, student life, career development, etc."

"The colleges best positioned to survive the financial challenge may be the urban commuter schools. Living at home while attending schools with limited-sized classes may become a much more palatable option for parents afraid to send their children to live in densely populated campus dorms," said Gil Gibori, CEO and founder of The House Tutoring Lounge. "A study out of Cornell modeled the effect of limiting the size of their classes on interpersonal interaction, using a sophisticated networking model, and found little effect on their close-knit campus."

Effects on Applications and Admissions

"For new students, it's going to be a mess. I expect that we will see many of the students who were so excited to be accepted a few months ago will either elect to take a gap year. Especially if the school is residential and far enough from home to make it difficult to return if needed," said John Pryor, founder of Pryor Education Insights. "If local colleges can open with safety measures in place — space between students in classrooms, for instance — they might be seen as a good option for a year while the situation with the virus becomes more definite."

"Over the longer term, the college admissions process next year will be more complex, due to online tests, online schooling, and changes to requirements," said Venkates Swaminathan, founder and CEO of LifeLaunchr, a member of the National Association for College Admission Counseling. "Admissions tests will be offered online and at home, and schools will have to adjust to teaching online. All of this will make the admissions process more complex."

"New domestic applications are likely to go down as many students and their parents may no longer be in the position to afford tuition fees because of being laid off, furloughed, unable to pay off loans, needing to dip into their savings, etc.," said Dr. Mansur Khamitov of the Nanyang Business School at Nanyang Technological University. "On the other hand, history shows that there is a documented tendency for a number of students to go up in recession times as they try to 'wait it out' so to speak with a hope that once recession is over, the job market will look much better. In that sense, only the time will truly tell what kind of a long-term impact COVID-19 will have on colleges and universities."

"Students for whom finances were not a particular concern are now focusing on their state institutions to save money. I think that schools like Harvard and Yale will always be just as selective as they are today, as most families would go to great lengths to make that a financial reality for an admitted student, but schools that are a few notches below in selectivity will see a substantial impact to their applicant pool," said Colleen Ganjian, a former undergraduate admissions officer and the owner of a college admissions consulting practice, DC College Counseling. "Parents have shifted from considering whether a school is a good fit to asking themselves whether it is 'worth it' from a financial perspective. As a result, I think it will be easier to gain admission to many selective private schools, but much harder to get into the highly regarded state institutions."

More Moves Toward Online Schools

Colleges and universities as well as primary and secondary schools have made an enormous shift toward online and virtual courses. While the ability to do this so quickly is impressive, the effects on teaching and learning has been very mixed. Even schools that had a viable online course system in place before the crisis are struggling to adapt to an entirely virtual program.

"Faculty and staff transitioned all learning to online and virtual in a very short period of time and this will undoubtedly impact the success and retention of students. If fewer students are successful in their courses and fewer students re-enroll for summer and fall semesters, campuses will see their retention rates and tuition revenues decline," said Brian Jones, director of admissions at Minnesota State University, Mankato.

"The requisite change to online learning has been challenging for most colleges, especially those campuses that emphasize an intimate college experience. What's more, with campus closures, colleges have lost the opportunity to actively engage with potential students through on-campus experiences, such as admitted student days and open houses," said Nicole Pilar, college counselor with Collegewise. "Sure, a college can mount a ton of webinars, but the fact remains that on-campus events are the most impactful events for students who want to get a visceral feel for a particular campus."

"Students might enroll in online programs such as Western Governors University or Southern New Hampshire—schools with good track records online, as opposed to residential colleges without as much experience with this method," said Pryor. "This could also happen with returning students who do not return this year. Some students and families understandably balk at paying high-touch residential college tuition for a low-touch experience." 

Implications for International Students

"Given the large number of international students who attend U.S. institutions of higher learning, there are many unknowns as we plan for the fall semester. In the event U.S. embassies and consulates are unable to reopen relatively soon, this will negatively impact the processing of newly admitted international students' I-20 and visa requests," said Stacy L. Peazant, academic and research administrator at the University of Florida. "Even if international students are able to participate in fall classes remotely, there will be technological access issues as well as freedom of speech and thought concerns for those citizens of more austere governments."

"Additionally, due to varying time zone differences, many international students may not be able to participate in remotely offered classes in real time," Peazant added. "In the event a temporary workaround cannot be offered to international students, higher ed institutions will incur less diverse student populations and deeper financial strain."

"If international students, a population that tends to pay more than domestic students, are unable to come to campus due to visa restrictions, their absence most certainly means lost tuition revenue," said Pilar. "While some schools might choose to offer a delayed start to those students —second semester or quarter, for example — the students' ability to return will depend on whether the State Department starts accepting routine visa appointments. And even if they do start accepting appointments, there is no guarantee those students will still choose to come to the U.S."

Financial Impact on Colleges and Universities

Like businesses, colleges and universities are feeling significant pressure on their finances due to the impact of COVID-19. And like so many businesses today, colleges and universities are taking measures in order to weather the storm and come out the other side.

"There are already very noticeable financial ramifications for colleges, staff and students alike and the situation is likely to only get worse for the time being and in the foreseeable future. Most of the colleges are reassessing their financials to only keep essential expenditures, enacting severe cost-cutting and saving measures, or even dipping into their already battered endowment funds," said Dr. Khamitov. "As a case in point, staff and employees at some colleges like the University of Arizona are already facing confirmed temporary pay cuts and furloughs. While universities and the government are announcing and rolling out relief package measures to support affected students facing financial hardship due to this global pandemic, such measures are not yet widespread or standard."

"Colleges and universities will first need to determine if they can recover from the financial losses they sustained during the spring semester and anticipate for the summer. There are predictions that some small institutions may need to close or merge, and larger institutions may need to reduce significant numbers of faculty and staff—or at least reduce their pay and benefits," said Allison Vaillancourt, vice president of organizational effectiveness at Segal, and previously at the University of Arizona as vice president of business affairs and human resources and a professor of practice in the School of Government & Public Policy and Honors College. "Many institutions rely on international students who typically pay full tuition. If they are barred from entering the United States or reluctant to come, many colleges and universities will lose a significant base of tuition support." 

Financial Impact on Student Loans

Something that's always a hot topic in higher education is student loans and student loan debt. COVID-19 is making itself felt very strongly in the world of credit cards, lines of credit, mortgages and student loans are no exception.

"It is too early to predict implications for student loan debt. However, losses in endowments and operating funds may prompt college and universities to reduce merit and need-based aid, which would drive students to take out larger loans," said Vaillancourt. "Students who have traditionally relied on on-campus work may have fewer options. Students with outstanding loans who choose not to return to colleges and universities may find themselves challenged to secure the salary levels needed to pay back their debt in a timely manner."

"One thing students need to remember is that student loans are only deferred for six months from the time a student graduates or stops attending class," said Robert Farrington, founder of The College Investor. "If their courses were cancelled early, loan deferment will come sooner than it would have had classes ended on their normal schedule."

Other Financial Effects of COVID-19 On Colleges and Students

"COVID-19 will change the nature of fundraising for many institutions. While the wealthiest donors may not feel financial constraints as much as others, I think there will be a decrease in gifts from alumni and parents who make small gifts to annual funds each year. Those $25 and $100 donations may seem insignificant, but collectively they add up to millions and can account for 5% or more an institution's annual revenue," said Emily Weisgrau, president of Weiswood Strategies, with over a decade of experience as staff and a consultant in higher education.

"Additionally, the backlash against large endowments may grow as people perceive that there are billions of dollars available to compensate for the loss in tuition, room, board, annual gifts and other sources of revenue," said Weisgrau. "This will mean colleges and universities will have to work harder to educate their constituents about how endowments work, why they are not the same as savings or emergency accounts, and what the long-term dangers are of pulling too much money out of them too quickly."

"New scholarship submissions are declining, which suggests fewer opportunities for students. As in, there are fewer scholarships being offered, not fewer students applying," said Mike Proctor of BrokerScholar. "A big sector of college and university scholarships is commercial companies that offer scholarships. Due to the impact of COVID-19, commercial companies are cutting their budgets and data shows that private scholarships from commercial organizations are down."

Best Online Communications Degree Programs • Benzinga - Benzinga

Posted: 01 May 2020 02:15 PM PDT

Benzinga Money is a reader-supported publication. We may earn a commission when you click on links in this article. Learn more.

Do you have a way with words and know how to effectively communicate with others? Put your knowledge to good use by pursuing a career in communications. 

With the right educational background, you can land a role that presents new and exciting challenges each day. And if you already work in the field, you can brush up on your skills and land that management role you've always wanted. 

Consider an online communications degree to bring you up to speed with all the latest developments and trends in the field. It will also help you attract top employers so you can get hired. 

Benzinga is here to help you find the best online communications degree program for you. 

Why Choose an Online Communications Degree?

The digital landscape is exploding, which means more opportunities for you as a communication major. Companies of all sizes, healthcare entities, governmental organizations and nonprofits need knowledgeable communications professionals. 

Communications majors have tons of flexibility with their career choice. Here are some of the most in-demand roles: 

  • Brand Strategist
  • Content Marketing Manager
  • Copywriter
  • Digital Strategist
  • Editor
  • Freelance Writer 
  • Marketing Coordinator 
  • Media Planner
  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Reporter or Correspondent 
  • Social Media Manager
  • Social Event Planner
  • Technical Writer

Another key benefit of getting an online communications degree is its earning potential. The amount you make will depend on your role, but expect a decent salary for most entry-level positions. As you rise through the ranks, your salary will follow suit. Freelance opportunities are also available if you wish to earn part-time income. 

Find an Online University

How to Choose an Online Communications Degree

Unsure of how to decide which programs are a worthwhile investment of your time and money? When evaluating online communications degree programs, be mindful of these factors: 


Is the degree offered by an accredited college or university? This is significant as it speaks volumes about the school's reputation. It also demonstrates that the departments within the institution adhere to strict academic standards.

A prospective employer may be reluctant to hire a recent communications graduate from an unaccredited university. If you make the mistake of choosing the wrong school, you may struggle to get your foot in the door at a reputable organization. 

Knowledgeable Instructors 

Anyone can read a pile of communication textbooks and regurgitate key concepts. But you want a professor that can do much more than that. They should be extremely knowledgeable in the field and know how to communicate in a way that's easy to understand. 

Relevant field experience is equally important. There are things that a textbook can't teach you, but your instructor can fill the void by sharing tips and advice from past experiences.


Don't be shocked by the cost of attendance for online communications degree programs. Many are well into the thousands, which is to be expected for a bachelor's degree. You only want to spend as much as you need to on your studies. 

So, what's a reasonable price? The rate for tuition and fees will vary by institution, but the price points should be comparable across institutions. If you find that one of your top selections is far more pricey than the others, remove it from your list. This prevents you from spending far too much money for the same result. 

Jobs Waiting for You with a Communications Degree

Here are a few of the top job opportunities for communication majors. 


Copywriters write to sell. Their primary objective is to produce written content that's intended to boost interest and sales for a particular product or service. 

On average, copywriters earn $63,200 per year. This equates to $30.39 per hour. 

Technical Writer 

Technical writers break complex material into written content that's easy to understand. They create how-to guides, instruction manuals, journal articles and other instructional content that can be distributed to employees and management throughout the organization. 

In 2018, the median pay for technical writers was $72,850. 

Public Relations Specialist 

Public relations specialists help shape and preserve the reputation of the organization or client with whom they are employed. They create press releases and social media posts and respond to inquiries from media outlets. Many also work closely with public relations managers to evaluate and gauge the effectiveness of PR strategies that are already in place.  

The average annual salary for public relations specialists is $61,150. 

Best Online Colleges for a Communications Degree

We've spent several hours researching and evaluating online communications degree programs. Our top picks are from reputable colleges and universities and afford you the flexibility you need to successfully juggle your educational, work and personal commitments. 

You will also find a detailed review of each program to help narrow down your options and select the most suitable choice. 

1. Southern New Hampshire University 

Southern New Hampshire University Logo

Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) offers an online Bachelor of Arts in communication. It prepares you for a career in advertising, journalism, new media, professional writing, public relations or social media. 

When you enroll, you will select a concentration. Choose from business communication, new media, professional writing or public relations. Each concentration requires specific courses, but all communication majors take the following core classes: 

  • Introduction to Communication 
  • Communication Law and Media Ethics 
  • Communication with Diverse Audiences
  • Global Communication
  • Management of Communication Projects 
  • Organizational Branding 
  • Personal Brand Communications   
  • Public Speaking and Presentation Skills
  • Social Media Strategy  
  • Strategic Storytelling 
  • Visual Communication and Design 

Planning to work towards your master's degree? Communication majors can take 2 graduate-level courses during their undergraduate tenure for credit. 

You need 120 credits to earn your degree. SNHU allows you to transfer up to 90 from an accredited college or university to save money and complete the program faster. 

Enroll now

2. Colorado State University 

CSU logo

Unleash your inner creativity as you hone your writing and technical skills. Consider an online Bachelor of Arts in journalism and media communication from CSU Online to show you how. 

This program is most suitable for aspiring media and communications professionals who plan to jump into the workforce immediately following graduation. It features a fluid curriculum that dives into advertising, magazine writing, marketing, media ethics and law, news writing, online storytelling, web design and so much more. 

Communication majors take these core courses: 

  • Media in Society 
  • Newswriting
  • Online Storytelling and Audience Engagement
  • Visual Communication

You will also take a capstone course to wrap up your studies. It features guest speakers who provide valuable insight into many careers and share resume writing and job hunting techniques. Plus, you will build an online portfolio during the course that can help you stand out among the competition when applying for jobs. 

Want to enhance your degree to closely align your studies with your career? Consider adding an optional minor in: 

  • Agricultural Business
  • Anthropology
  • Business Administration
  • Creative Writing
  • Economics
  • Gerontology
  • Global and Environmental Sustainability 
  • History 
  • Interdisciplinary Global Studies
  • Media Studies
  • Political Science
  • Sociology 

CSU online requires 120 credits to complete the program. Up to 72 transfer credits are permitted from qualifying colleges and universities. 

Enroll now.

3. Florida International University


Consider an online Bachelor of Arts in communication arts with a concentration in organizational communication studies from Florida International University Online.

It's ideal for aspiring communication professionals who want to work in business, education, government and nonprofit entities. Students planning to seek a graduate degree in business administration, education hospitality management, human resource management, social work or other related fields will also benefit from the program. 

This degree program delves into the fundamentals of business and interpersonal communication, group dynamics and the art of persuasion. You will also develop vital organizational communication skills needed to manage conflict and crisis in the workplace, make sound decisions, build teams and effectively lead others. 

Students complete the following core courses: 

  • Advanced Public Speaking 
  • Business and Professional Communication 
  • Communication for Effective Leadership 
  • Communication Theory 
  • Conflict Management 
  • Intercultural/Interracial Communication 
  • Interpersonal Communication 
  • Interviewing Principles and Practices and Lab 
  • Organizational Communication
  • Persuasion 
  • Rhetorical Communication: A Theory of Civil Discourse 

You need 120 credits to reach the finish line. 

Enroll now.

4. University of Central Florida 

Want a better understanding of communication at the intercultural and interpersonal level? Consider an online Bachelor of Arts in communication and conflict to acquire more in-depth knowledge. 

Core courses for students enrolled in the program include: 

  • Communication and Conflict 
  • Communication Theories of Interpersonal Conflict
  • Conflict Communication Research Methods 
  • Conflict and Communication Context

You will also select 5 electives from the following options: 

  • Crisis Communication 
  • Electronic Media, Technology and Society 
  • Gender Issues in Communication
  • Intercultural Communication
  • Organizational Communication
  • Public Relations 
  • Thirty-Party Processes and Intervention 
  • Transformative Communication 

This 120-credit program also teaches you how to negotiate in the real world through simulated conflict resolution training activities. Upon completion, you will be prepared for a career as an arbitrator, counselor, dispute resolution administrator, employee assistance provider, family law facilitator, foreclosure mediation coordinator or human resources administrator.

Enroll now.

5. University of Minnesota Crookston 

The online Bachelor of Science from the University of Minnesota Crookston also prepares students for an exciting role. 

Students choose an emphasis from the following options to fit their career goals:

  • Communication studies
  • Communication/public relations 
  • Writing 

The following classes are required for all communication majors: 

  • Introduction to Communication 
  • Business and Professional Speaking 
  • Communication Technology Trends
  • Communication Theory 
  • Human Relationships and Leaderships 
  • News and Social Media Communication 
  • Organizational Communication
  • Research Fundamentals
  • Persuasion
  • Seminar in Communication 

There's also an internship component that allows you to gain valuable real-world experience. 

Alumni work in many roles, including business writing, health management, marketing, media relations, politics, public affairs, public relations, speech writing and technical writing. 

You need 120 credits to earn your degree. 

Enroll now.

6. Arizona State University 

asu logo

Learn how communication processes are leveraged to develop, manage and transform the identities of communities and workplaces. If this sounds intriguing, the online Bachelor of Science in communication from Arizona State University may be a good fit. 

You will receive detailed instruction in business and professional communication, conflict and negotiation, intercultural communication in the global marketplace, leadership persuasion and social influence. 

Communication majors must successfully complete these core classes: 

  • Advanced Research Methods in Communication 
  • Communication in Business and the Professions 
  • Communication in Professions 
  • Communication, Conflict and Negotiation 
  • Communication Training and Development 
  • Gender and Communication 
  • Introduction to Communication Inquiry 
  • Leadership in Group Communication 
  • Persuasion and Social Influence 
  • Quantitative Research Methods in Communication

When you reach the finish line, you will be ready to work in event planning, human resource management, public relations, sales and other related fields. 

Enroll now.

7. University of Louisville 


Do you currently work as a communications professional and want to continue your education? The online bachelor's degree program in communication from the University of Louisville is worth considering. 

The curriculum will position you for a promotion or more rewarding role in communication training and development, electronic media, print media or public relations. It also provides you with more advanced insights on interpersonal, organizational and rhetorical competencies related to communication. 

Undergraduate students pursuing this degree must take the following core courses: 

  • Introduction to Communication
  • Advanced Speech Communication or 319 Debate
  • Argument in Everyday Life
  • Introduction to Communication Technologies 
  • Introduction to Interpersonal Communication 
  • Introduction to Mass Communication 
  • Research Methods 

You will also complete an internship to acquire hands-on experience in the field. 

Enroll now.

8. Pennsylvania State University World Campus 

Prepare for a career in advertising, fundraising, marketing, media relations and public relations with an online bachelor's degree in strategic communications from Penn State World Campus. 

The rigorous curriculum dives into practical ways to craft messages that resonate with target audiences. You will also learn how to evaluate communication channels and efforts. 

You'll need to complete 120 credit hours, and students are required to take these core classes: 

  • Principles of Strategic Communications
  • Research and Analytics 
  • Social Media Strategies 
  • Strategic Communications in a Global Environment  
  • Strategic Communications Law
  • Writing for the Media 

When you finish the coursework, you will know how to create communication strategies that coincide with company objectives. 

Enroll now.

9. University of North Dakota 

north dakota

Get an online Bachelor of Arts in communication from the University of North Dakota. It will equip you with the knowledge and skills needed to thrive in an advertising, public relations or writing role. 

This 120-credit degree program is designed to be completed in 4 years. However, you can finish faster if you already have credits from an accredited college or university under your belt. 

You also have the option to make your degree even more valuable by specializing in advertising, digital analytics, digital journalism, public relations, social media strategy or strategic communication. 

Enroll now.

Get Started with an Online Communications Degree Program

Don't spend hours agonizing over which online communications degree program is best. Start with our list of top selections, compare the top options and select the program that best suits your needs, budget and lifestyle. 

Angry Undergrads Are Suing Colleges for Billions in Refunds - Bloomberg

Posted: 01 May 2020 03:25 PM PDT

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Angry Undergrads Are Suing Colleges for Billions in Refunds  Bloomberg


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