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Entries in On Campus by Kirk Carapezza

Harvard will implement its first university-wide sexual assault policy this fall. As part of the policy, a team of trained civil rights investigators, working out of a new centralized office, will review all sexual assault cases at each of the university's thirteen schools. Previously, academic administrators had been the ones to investigate those reports.

When you factor in the size of a school’s endowment and its ability to offer financial aid, it turns out, incoming full-time freshmen at the University of Massachusetts Amherst are paying more than their counterparts at Harvard. That’s according to the latest federal figures released by the Department of Education.

These figures were released as part of Washington’s push to make college more affordable. The Department’s transparency website measures how fast college costs are increasing and which institutions have the highest and lowest net prices. Students and families can search for costs at more than 4,200 public and private, for-profit and non-profit institutions.

A new report out this week from the Brookings Institution looks at more than two decades of financial data, specifically how Americans are paying for higher education. 

The report finds the student debt crisis that we've all been hearing about isn't actually as bad as the public – and the media – often makes it out to be.

WGBH’s Kirk Carapezza sat down with Beth Akers, a co-author of the report, to talk about the controversial findings.

It’s been 50 years since Massachusetts Governor Endicott Peabody signed a bill creating a Boston campus for the University of Massachusetts, a move that came after UMass Amherst turned down more than 1,000 qualified applicants from the city.

Since then, UMass Boston has evolved dramatically, moving from downtown to Dorchester, merging with Boston State College, and forging a partnership with the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the US Senate. But the school’s mission, marked by a staunch commitment to urban residents and issues, remains the same. Today, the public research university serves more than 16,000 students. 

On Wednesday, the Senate voted against a bill filed by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., that would allow college graduates to refinance their outstanding student loans at lower interest rates. 

Despite the public outcry about mounting student loan debt, Republican leaders widely dismissed the measure as a progressive political stunt during an election year because it called for a new tax on millionaires and billionaires to cover the cost. 

President Obama issued an executive order on Monday, authorizing college students who take out federal loans to cap their loan repayments at 10 percent of their monthly incomes. Obama said the order would allow an additional five million borrowers to cap their student loans beginning next year.  

The president is also urging Congress to pass a bill introduced by Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren that would allow students to refinance their federal and private student loans at lower interest rates.

Former mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg advised Harvard University graduates “to do a better job of promoting tolerance of diverse ideas.” On Thursday, Bloomberg delivered Harvard’s commencement address and cited incidents where students have shouted down speakers on campus and elsewhere. 

The demand for computer science majors is booming. Even at traditionally liberal arts institutions, students who want to learn how to code are flocking to colleges and universities. It's almost hard to believe that the field wasn't even considered a real major back in the 1960s. 

In Cambridge this week, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is celebrating 50 years of computing and the birth of a new field.

This month marks the anniversary of Brown v. Board, the 1954 Supreme Court decision that declared 'separate but equal' education unconstitutional and provided the legal basis for desegregating schools.

Sixty years later, data from The Civil Rights Project at UCLA shows American schools are actually more racially isolated than ever.

Nikole Hannah-Jones is a reporter with ProPublica. Her most recent story looks at why schools are as segregated now as they were before the landmark decision.

Listen to our interview with Nikole at the Education Writers Association's national seminar in Nashville:

Boston College is being sued by a former Irish Republican Army soldier who contributed to the university's oral history project about civil unrest in Northern Ireland, raising questions about international contract law.

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