Far from home, Nigerian-born prep star pursues academic and basketball dreams in Michigan - MLive.com

When Peter Nwoke remembers the last hug he shared with his mother, a smile spreads across his face. It was a hug 10 months in the making and it remains one of his favorite memories. “It was the best feeling ever,” Nwoke said. The hug happened back in 2018 when Nwoke was just 15 years old. He had just completed the long 14-hour flight home from Detroit Metro Airport to his home Lagos, Nigeria, where his sister, Roselyne, was waiting to pick him up and take him home for a three-week stay. When Nwoke’s mother, Adamma, laid eyes on her son, she rushed to him before he made it to the front door. “My mom hugged me for five-straight minutes,” Nwoke said. “I wasn’t even in the house yet.” It was the first time he had returned to his hometown since moving to the United States in 2017 to fulfill an academic scholarship he obtained at Orchard Lake St. Mary’s Preparatory, a Catholic boarding school in southeast Michigan. Up until that point, it was the longest Nwoke had ever been away from ho

Accolades: New Best-Value Guide Says UVA 'Worth Your Money' - UVA Today

Accolades: New Best-Value Guide Says UVA 'Worth Your Money' - UVA Today

Accolades: New Best-Value Guide Says UVA 'Worth Your Money' - UVA Today

Posted: 22 Feb 2021 11:58 AM PST

The University of Virginia is one of 150 institutions selected for inclusion in the first edition of a new college guidebook, "Colleges Worth Your Money."

According to a press release, each college profile contains more than 75 data points, including admission statistics, salary and return-on-investment figures, information on companies that recruit on campus, where students land internships and jobs, and more.

"With costs soaring and competition for admission at an all-time high, the college-bound can no longer afford not to consider factors like cost, career services, and [return on investment] when deciding on a school," the press release said.

We can do this. Keep going, UVA.

The book's authors are Andrew Belasco, CEO of College Transitions, an educational consulting firm; Dave Bergman, co-founder of College-Transitions; and Michael Trivette, a veteran higher education administrator in student services.

The listing is the latest of a long string of national citations highlighting the value of a UVA education.

Princeton Review recently listed UVA as No. 12 among the "Best Value Colleges," which focuses on return on investment and includes institutional data along with student surveys, and No. 7 in "Best Value Colleges Without Aid," which measures the return on investment for students who do not receive financial aid. In August, Money Magazine ranked UVA the nation's second-best-value public university and No. 6 among all schools, public and private.

English Professor Joins Long Line of Distinguished Lecturers in Cambridge Series

Rita Felski, John Stewart Bryan Professor of English, is giving the Clark Lectures in English Literature at Trinity College Cambridge over the next several weeks.

These lectures have been given by the most eminent writers, philosophers and literary critics of the 20th century, including T.S. Eliot, Leslie Stephen (father of Virginia Woolf; Woolf declined an invitation), E.M. Forster, Toni Morrison, Tom Stoppard, Richard Rorty, Adrienne Rich, Seamus Heaney, Rowan Williams (former Archbishop of Canterbury), historian Carlo Ginzburg, as well as the figures responsible for the founding of English literature as a field of study in the early 20th century: F.R. Leavis, William Empson and I.A. Richards.

Felski, who is also the Neils Bohr Professor at the University of Southern Denmark, will give four talks, all via videoconference. On Thursday, her title was "Remix." On March 4, she will discuss "On Recognition: Returning to Reims." On March 11, her topic is "On Disclosure: Robert Walser. She concludes March 18 with "On Resonance: Stoner and Theory."

Johnson to Lead American Astronomical Society

Astronomy professor Kelsey Johnson is trading one presidency for another.

Earlier this month, Johnson was elected president of the 7,700-member American Astronomical Society, effective this summer, following a two-year term as president of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, which ends in 2021.

Johnson's election to lead the AAS comes after years of service to the 122-year-old society. She has been an at-large member of its Board of Trustees since 2017 and chairs the Code of Ethics Task Force. She has also been a member of the society's Strategic Assembly and its Strategic Plan Policy, Outreach, and News Release Subcommittee.

Johnson ran for the presidency on a platform calling for more diversity in the society's membership and leadership.

"One critical sign of health is the demographics of our members," she wrote in her winning candidate statement. "It is essential that the AAS be broadly inclusive and welcoming in our mission 'to enhance and share humanity's scientific understanding of the Universe.' It is clear that we need to do better."

Johnson also called for the promotion of "science literacy and advocacy among both policy makers and the general public." She currently directs the Dark Skies Bright Kids program, which leads astronomical outreach programs for local elementary school students.

At UVA, she is also director of the Echols Scholar program.

Law Student Wins Swanson Award

Nirajé Medley-Bacon, a second-year student at the School of Law, is this year's recipient of the Gregory H. Swanson Award, named in honor of UVA and the Law School's first Black student. The award recognizes students who demonstrate courage, perseverance and a commitment to justice within the community.

Medley-Bacon received the award Jan. 29 as part of UVA's Community MLK Celebration event, hosted by the Law School online.

"When I do things [with the Black Law Students Association or at the Law School] … I just do it because I find it interesting or I find it to be important work," she said. "So to know I was recognized by my peers, as well by professors and other members of the Law School community, for having good character and conduct, that was just really special to me, and it's something I'm really proud of, to know that I have that kind of positive impact on other people."

At UVA Law, Medley-Bacon serves as Black Law Students Association social action chair and on the organization's mock trial team (where she was a National Black Law Students Association Mid-Atlantic region quarterfinalist), on the editorial board of The Journal of Law & Politics and as a Peer Advisor. In November, she was appointed the student representative on the President's Council on UVA-Community Partnerships, created in 2019 by UVA President Jim Ryan.

The Swanson Award, launched in 2018 during a commemoration of Swanson's time at UVA, is meant to recognize students who have the traits he embodied. Swanson attended UVA Law during the 1950-51 academic year as an LL.M. student after winning a federal lawsuit aided by the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.

Faculty Trio Receives NEH Funding

Three faculty members are among the recipients of $32.8 million worth of National Endowment for the Humanities grants, announced in December. The grants support 213 humanities projects in 44 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

Marlene Daut, professor of African diaspora studies in the Carter G. Woodson Institute and the Program in American Studies, received a $60,000 NEH Fellowship for her project, "Awakening the Ashes: An Intellectual History of Haiti," allowing her to pursue research and writing leading to an intellectual history of Haiti from 1804 to the 1950s.

History professor Andrew Kahrl received a $30,000 NEH Fellowship for his project, "The Power to Destroy: A Hidden History of Race and Taxes in America," which will allow him to pursue research and writing leading to a book and digital map on property taxation and race from Reconstruction through the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. 

Ariana Maki, a research scientist in the Department of Religious Studies, received a $60,000 NEH-Mellon Fellowships for Digital Publication for "Digital Biography: Teaching the Life of the Buddha Using Literature and Art," art historical research and writing on the extensive 17th-century murals at the Tibetan Buddhist monastery of Jonang Puntsokling, for the Life of the Buddha project. 

UVA Health Awarded for Reducing COVID-19 Infections at Long-Term Care Facilities

UVA Health has received a national health innovation award for its collaborative program to prevent COVID-19 infections at local long-term care facilities and reduce mortality when outbreaks occur.

UVA Health's Geriatric Engagement and Resource Integration for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Facilities program, also known as GERI-PaL, was named a runner-up in the 2020 Health Quality Innovators of the Year Awards.

GERI-PaL brings together specialists from within UVA and across the health care community through telehealth technology to control COVID-19 at long-term care facilities, which nationally have been particularly vulnerable to the pandemic's effects because of the serious health challenges many of their residents face.

"I am so proud to see the efforts of our entire team and our long-term care facility and community partners recognized," said UVA Health geriatrician Dr. Laurie R. Archbald-Pannone, the program's lead physician. "This is a wonderful example of health care providers here in the Charlottesville area who are working tirelessly to provide quality care for patients with COVID-19."

As part of the program, long-term care facilities are able to consult with UVA infectious disease experts to develop infection-control procedures; meet with a range of UVA experts in nursing, geriatrics and pulmonology to receive the latest COVID-19 guidance through Project ECHO; obtain consultations on individual patients and transfers to the hospital as needed; have medical student volunteers call residents to reduce social isolation; and have regular discussions with a nurse liaison to make sure each facility's needs are being met.

A research paper based on the first two facility outbreaks addressed by the GERI-PaL team showed lower mortality rates – 12% and 19% – compared with a 28% mortality rate reported at a long-term care facility in Washington state.

3 Law Alumni To Be Honored for Public Service

Three School of Law alumni – Elisabeth Epps (Class of 2011), professor Toby Heytens (Class of 2000) and April Nicole Russo (Class of 2011) – were honored Saturday for their public service work at the school's fifth annual Shaping Justice conference.

Heytens received the Shaping Justice Award for Extraordinary Achievement. He is on leave from the Law School to serve as solicitor general of Virginia.

Epps and Russo received Shaping Justice Rising Star Awards. Epps founded and directs the Colorado Freedom Fund, and Russo is an assistant U.S. attorney at the U.S. Attorney's Office's Child Exploitation & Human Trafficking Unit, where she serves as the Project Safe Childhood Coordinator for the District of Columbia.

In 2018, Epps founded the Colorado Freedom Fund, a prison abolitionist community bond fund that works to end wealth-based detention via litigation, legislation and direct action. The Colorado Freedom Fund has paid bond for over 1,000 Coloradans and secured their pretrial release. She also serves as the Smart Justice organizer for ACLU for Colorado. In both roles she has played a role in passing legislation in Colorado that increases pretrial liberty and fairness across the state.

She was a recipient of the Civil Rights Education and Enforcement Center's 2020 Challenging Discrimination Award.

"The work of those of us who chart our own course is important," Epps said, "and I appreciate that being recognized."

Heytens first joined the faculty in 2006 and then rejoined in 2010 after having spent three years working in the Office of the U.S. Solicitor General and arguing six cases before the U.S. Supreme Court. He was appointed solicitor general in 2018.

He successfully represented the Commonwealth of Virginia in oral argument at the U.S. Supreme Court in Virginia Uranium Inc. v. Warren, and Virginia House of Delegates v. Bethune-Hill, which were both decided on the same day in 2019.

He and his co-authors won the National Association of Attorneys General Supreme Court Best Brief Award in 2020 for an amicus brief filed in Trump v. Vance, and in 2019 for an amicus brief filed in Bethune-Hill.

Russo is a senior assistant U.S. attorney at the U.S. Attorney's Office in Washington, D.C., in the Human Trafficking & Child Exploitation Section and is the district's Project Safe Childhood Coordinator. Prior to joining the D.C. office, she served as the Human Trafficking Coordinator and Project Safe Childhood Coordinator, as well as deputy chief for the General Crimes Unit, at the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of Michigan.

"Events like the Shaping Justice conference remind us of the importance of persevering during these difficult times, of always fighting the good fight, and of replacing rage, hatred and anger with dedication, commitment and hope for a better tomorrow," Russo said.

Class of 2011 classmate Jessica Vormwald, assistant commonwealth's attorney for Lynchburg, noted Russo's success prosecuting human trafficking and child exploitation crimes, as well as being an outspoken victim advocate.

"April's commitment, dedication, kindness, integrity, compassion and work ethic will surely lead April to continue to make a difference in any future endeavor," Vormwald said in her nomination letter.

Ahead of the Curve: The Law Review Trailblazers of 2021 - Law.com

Posted: 23 Feb 2021 06:54 AM PST

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Governor Cuomo Announces Four-Point Plan to Reduce Sexual Violence in Educational Institutions as Part of 2021 Women's Agenda - ny.gov

Posted: 23 Feb 2021 08:08 AM PST

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced a four-point plan to reduce sexual violence in educational institutions as part of the state's 2021 Women's Agenda. As part of this plan, the Governor has directed SUNY and the state's Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence - a newly reimagined agency proposed by the Governor in his 2021 State of the State - to establish an innovative hub to develop enforceable policies, trainings and outreach programs to combat and end sexual violence on college campuses. SUNY's Student Conduct Institute will also expand its existing resources and engagement to 1,000 institutions, and SUNY will make its Sexual & Interpersonal Violence Prevention and Response Course available to other colleges and universities across the nation, allowing them to benefit from New York's leadership and program expertise on confronting sexual violence. Additionally, SUNY will launch a new social and digital campaign to raise awareness about the signs of sexual assault and intimate partner violence and connect students to support services. These new actions build on New York's "Enough is Enough" legislation -the most aggressive policy in the nation to fight against sexual assault on college campuses - signed into law by the Governor in 2015.

"We've made significant strides in combating sexual violence on college campuses with aggressive measures that hold our colleges and universities to the highest possible standards," Governor Cuomo said. "As the world around us changes, we need to become more innovative in the way we approach education and awareness about sexual violence, and these new measures will expand our reach to even more students across the state and help make our colleges even safer."

Secretary to the Governor and Chair of the New York State Council on Women and Girls Melissa DeRosa said, "Sexual violence has been a pervasive issue in our educational institutions and beyond, and New York has taken bold, nation-leading action to fight against sexual assault on college campuses and create safer environments for our future leaders to receive a first-class education. This new plan builds on the work we've already done to combat sexual and domestic violence in our educational institutions by using innovative strategies to increase public education and awareness while prioritizing access to support and services for survivors." 

SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras said, "Under the leadership of Governor Cuomo, SUNY has been in the forefront in ending domestic and gender-based violence on campuses. We have to repair a lot of damage done by the former federal administration that attempted to reverse policies to keep our students safe on campus. Today's announcement by Governor Cuomo is further proof that our state will continue to lead in this effort with comprehensive policies, shared practices, and resources. SUNY is recognized across the nation as a think tank on the legal issues surrounding due diligence with any allegation or complaint, and developing policies to protect all students, particularly LGBTQIA+ students who are disproportionately impacted by sexual and interpersonal violence and less likely to seek services or report incidents. With Governor Cuomo's support we will continue to lead the way." 

The Governor's four-point plan includes:

National Hub for Policy Development: SUNY, in partnership with the newly transformed New York State Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence, will establish the Center for Advanced Research in Reducing the Impact of Violence in Education - or ARRIVE - to oversee the development of enforceable policies, student-focused training and outreach programs to combat sexual violence on college campuses. Trainings and programs developed by the Center will be adopted by all 89 SUNY and CUNY campuses in Fall 2021 and made available to thousands of professionals nation-wide through their membership in SUNY's Student Conduct Institute. 

Expanding the Reach of SUNY's Student Conduct Institute Resources: SUNY's Student Conduct Institute will continue to expand its resources and engagement. While federal response to sexual and interpersonal violence has been inconsistent, the SUNY Student Conduct Institute has helped to position New York to lead the nation in its innovative approach to preparing schools to respond to sexual assault with high-quality training on due process, trauma-informed investigations and adjudications, questioning and weighing of evidence and other critical best practices in the investigation and conduct process that complies with relevant case law. SUNY's Student Conduct Institute has grown to more than 420 colleges, universities and other organizations, including all SUNY and CUNY campuses. Its member institutions educate more than three million college students nationwide. By the start of the 2022 academic year, SUNY's Student Conduct Institute will seek to expand to 1,000 institutions, ensuring at least five million college students nationwide can benefit from New York's leadership and program expertise on confronting sexual violence. More information and an application for institutional membership is available at system.suny.edu/sci/. 

Releasing SUNY's Nation-Leading Sexual & Interpersonal Violence Prevention and Response Course to More Colleges and Universities: SUNY will release its trauma-informed and survivor-centered Sexual & Interpersonal Violence Prevention and Response Course for free to any college or university across the country. Originally developed in 2017, the course is a customizable online training system to assist colleges and universities in training students in the prevention of sexual, interpersonal and related violence.  

Social and Digital Campaign to Raise Awareness: SUNY and the Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence will create and launch the "I'm Asking for a Friend" social and digital campaign to help students identify and prevent sexual assault and domestic or dating violence. The campaign will also alert students of support services that are available. 

Governor Cuomo has long been a champion of women's rights and has fought tirelessly to address the root causes of domestic and sexual violence. As part of his 2021 State of the State, the Governor put forth a comprehensive package of proposals to combat combat domestic and gender-based violence, including a proposal to transform the Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence into a reimagined agency: Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence, and will be tasked with addressing the intersection of the many forms of intimate partner violence, including domestic violence and sexual violence, in a survivor-centered manner.   

NYS Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence Executive Director Kelli Owens said, "Thanks to Governor Cuomo's leadership, New York State is a national leader when it comes to protecting the rights of women, ending gender-based violence, and preventing sexual violence. OPDV is proud to partner with SUNY/CUNY to continue these efforts. As we re-imagine our systems to deliver more survivor-centered support to victims and survivors of dating and sexual violence, training, outreach and awareness are key to our progress. We look forward to expanding the safety net of support for survivors and continuing our progress through these innovative approaches." 

NYS Office of Victim Services Director Elizabeth Cronin said, "OVS provides assistance to crime victims and works hard with a network of partners to ensure that all crime victims have the help they need. We are proud to partner with SUNY and OPDV on these critical initiatives, which will help put an end to sexual violence and ensure that victims can access support. We thank Governor Cuomo, Secretary DeRosa and Chancellor Malatras for their leadership and steadfast commitment to making New York State a safer place for all." 

CUNY Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez said, "Governor Cuomo's plan to develop student-focused programs to combat campus sexual violence and sexual harassment is an important step forward for our state's public colleges, adding to the effective measures the Governor enacted in his 2015 Enough is Enough law. The trainings and programs planned by this new needed initiative will help advance the basic right of every student to live, learn and work in a safe environment." 

Other initiatives at SUNY include: SUNY SPECTRUM, the nation's largest conference addressing violence against members of the LGBTQIA+ Community, SAVR (Sexual Assault and Violence Response) an online program of state and national resources, the SUNY Visa and Immigration resource to serve immigrant and international victims and survivors, the SUNY RAPID training to help faculty and staff report disclosures of violence, crime, and harassment, and SUNY's Got Your Back, the nation's leading program providing comfort bags at hospitals and shelters throughout New York State for survivors of sexual and interpersonal violence.

About The State University of New York

The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY's 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, the state's only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.3 million students in credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide were more than $1.0 billion in fiscal year 2020, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunity, visit www.suny.edu.

The City University of New York is the nation's largest urban public university, a transformative engine of social mobility that is a critical component of the lifeblood of New York City. Founded in 1847 as the nation's first free public institution of higher education, CUNY today has seven community colleges11 senior colleges and seven graduate or professional institutions spread across New York City's five boroughs, serving 500,000 students of all ages and awarding 55,000 degrees each year. CUNY's mix of quality and affordability propels almost six times as many low-income students into the middle class and beyond as all the Ivy League colleges combined. More than 80 percent of the University's graduates stay in New York, contributing to all aspects of the city's economic, civic and cultural life and diversifying the city's workforce in every sector. CUNY's graduates and faculty have received many prestigious honors, including 13 Nobel Prizes and 26 MacArthur "Genius" Grants. The University's historic mission continues to this day: provide a first-rate public education to all students, regardless of means or background.

Skyline and Park City seniors names Utah's US Senate Youth Program scholarship winners - Utah Policy

Posted: 22 Feb 2021 10:54 AM PST

The United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP)  announced that high school students Ms. Aarushi Verma and Ms. Caroline Blair Waldmann will join Senator  Mike Lee and Senator Mitt Romney in representing Utah during the 59th annual USSYP Washington Week, to be held March 14—17, 2021. Aarushi Verma, a senior at Skyline High School, and Caroline Waldmann, a senior at Park City High School, were selected from among the state's top student leaders to be part of the 104 national student delegation. They will each also receive a $10,000 college scholarship for undergraduate study. Due to the pandemic, the 2021 program will break ground as the first-ever fully virtual Washington Week, and is designed to be  a highly interactive and exciting education and leadership forum for the nation's most outstanding student leaders. 

The USSYP was created by Senate Resolution 324 in 1962 and has been sponsored by the Senate and fully funded by The Hearst Foundations since inception. Originally proposed by Senators Kuchel, Mansfield, Dirksen and Humphrey, the Senate leadership of the day, the impetus for the program as stated  in Senate testimony is "to increase young Americans' understanding of the interrelationships of the three branches of government, learn the caliber and responsibilities of federally elected and appointed officials, and emphasize the vital importance of democratic decision making not only for America but for people around the world." 

Each year this extremely competitive merit-based program brings the most outstanding high school students - two from each state, the District of Columbia and the Department of Defense Education Activity - to Washington, D.C. for an intensive week-long study of the federal government and the people who lead it. However, this year, the program will be held online. The overall mission of the program is to help instill  within each class of USSYP student delegates more profound knowledge of the American political process  and a lifelong commitment to public service. In addition to the program week, The Hearst Foundations  provide each student with a $10,000 undergraduate college scholarship with encouragement to continue  coursework in government, history and public affairs. All expenses for Washington Week are also provided  by The Hearst Foundations; as stipulated in S.Res.324, no government funds are utilized. 

Aarushi Verma, a senior at Skyline High School, has served as the mayor of the Millcreek Youth Council. She is currently leading a campaign to commit her school district to a transition to 100% clean  energy by 2030, working alongside students, faculty, and community members. In addition, she serves as  a speaker for Wasteless Solutions, a nonprofit working to reduce food waste in Utah. In 2019, she represented the organization as a presenter at the 68th United Nations Civil Society Conference and is currently working on creating a guidebook on waste diversion advocacy. Aarushi also serves as a  coordinator of the Salt Lake City Sunrise Movement Hub, working to elect Green New Deal champions to  government, while acting as Lincoln Douglas captain for her high school debate team. She plans to pursue  a degree in public policy and eventually work as an environmental lawyer or political campaign advisor. 

Caroline Waldmann, a senior at Park City High School, serves as co-president of the National  Honor Society. As an Ambassador Girl Scout, an event lead on her Speech and Debate Team, and a Teen Ambassador for March For Our Lives Utah, she keeps herself busy. She is involved with the Christian Center of Park City and leads the Utah chapter of Beyond Resolved, a student-led organization devoted to increasing the equality and accessibility of high school speech and debate. Caroline currently plans on attending the University of Chicago, where she will study public policy, economics, and philosophy with the goal of attending law school. 

Chosen as alternates to the 2021 program were Ms. Ashton Pelley, a resident of Sandy, who attends Jordan High School and Mr. Vishal Jammulapati, a resident of Salt Lake City, who attends West High School. 

Delegates and alternates are selected by the state departments of education nationwide and the  District of Columbia and Department of Defense Education Activity, after nomination by teachers and  principals. The chief state school officer for each jurisdiction confirms the final selection. This year's Utah delegates and alternates were designated by Dr. Sydnee Dickson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction. 

During the program week, the student delegates will attend online meetings and briefings with senators, the president, a justice of the Supreme Court, leaders of cabinet agencies and senior members of the national media, among others. 

In addition to outstanding leadership abilities and a strong commitment to volunteer work, the student delegates rank academically in the top one percent of their states among high school juniors and seniors. Now more than 5,800 strong, alumni of the program continue to excel and develop impressive qualities that are often directed toward public service. Among the many distinguished alumni are: Senator Susan Collins, the first alumnus to be elected U.S. senator; Secretary of Transportation and former Mayor of South Bend Indiana, Pete Buttigieg; former Senator Cory Gardner, the second alumnus to be elected U.S. senator and the first to be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives; former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, the first alumnus to be elected governor; former Chief Judge Robert Henry, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit; former Ambassador to West Germany Richard Burt, former presidential advisors Thomas "Mack" McLarty and Karl Rove. Additional notables include former Lt. Governor of Idaho David Leroy, Provost of Wake Forest University Rogan Kersh, military officers, members of state  legislatures, Foreign Service officers, top congressional staff, healthcare providers and other university educators. 

Members of the U. S. Senate Youth Program 2021 annual Senate Advisory Committee are: Senator Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, Democratic Co-Chair; Senator James Lankford of Oklahoma, Republican Co-Chair; Advisory Members: Senator Thomas R. Carper (D-DE); Senator Christopher S. Murphy (D-CT); Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ); Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR); Senator Richard Burr (R NC); Senator Kevin Cramer (R-ND); Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) and Senator Roger F. Wicker (R-MS). Each  year, the Honorary Co-Chairs of the program are the vice president of the United States and the Senate majority and minority leaders. 

ErudiFi raises $5 million Series A to give students in Southeast Asia more education financing options - TechCrunch

Posted: 23 Feb 2021 12:47 AM PST

Based in Singapore, ErudiFi wants to help more students in Southeast Asia stay in school by giving them affordable financing options. The startup announced today it has raised a $5 million Series A, co-led by Monk's Hill Ventures and Qualgro.

ErudiFi currently works with more than 50 universities and vocational schools in Indonesia and the Philippines. Co-founder and chief executive officer Naga Tan told TechCrunch that students in those countries have limited financing options, and often rely on friends or family, or informal payday lenders that charge high interest rates.

To provide more accessible financing options, ErudiFi partners with accredited universities and schools to offer subsidized installment plans, using tech to scale up while keeping costs down. Interest rates and repayment terms vary between institutions, but can be as low as 0%, with loans payable in 12 to 24 months.

By providing their students with affordable financing plans, ErudiFi can increase retention rates at schools, helping them keep students who would otherwise be forced to drop out because of financial issues.

Tan said ErudiFi's value proposition for educational institutions is "being able to offer a data-driven financing solution that helps with student recruitment and retention. Students also greatly benefit because our product is one of the few, if not the only, affordable financing option they have access to."

In a press statement, Peng T. Ong, co-founder and managing partner of Monk's Hill Ventures, said, "Access to affordable tertiary education remains a huge pain point in Southeast Asia where the cost is nearly double then the average GDP per capita. ErudiFi is tackling an underserved market that is plagued with high-interest rates by traditional financial institutions and limited reach from peer-to-peer lending companies."

ErudiFi's Series A will be used on hiring for its product and engineering teams and to expand in Indonesia and the Philippines.


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