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This week in higher ed

•The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has pledged to cover all the costs of education for about 125 freshmen next fall. Dubbed the Illinois Promise, the new program will supplement traditional financial aid with grants from the university covering everything from tuition to books, without student loans. The program, funded through private donations, will benefit in-state students who qualify academically, coming from families at or below the poverty level, for all four years of college. (Chicago Tribune, 12/7/04)
•The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has pledged to cover all the costs of education for about 125 freshmen next fall. Dubbed the Illinois Promise, the new program will supplement traditional financial aid with grants from the university covering everything from tuition to books, without student loans. The program, funded through private donations, will benefit in-state students who qualify academically, coming from families at or below the poverty level, for all four years of college. (Chicago Tribune, 12/7/04)

•Nationwide, one-third of college students are reporting symptoms of serious mental illness, according to a 2004 study by the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill. The percentage of students ever diagnosed with depression climbed from 10.3 percent fall 2000 to 14.9 percent in spring 2004. The number of students counseled each year for depression doubled from 1988 to 2001. And the number counseled for suicidal thoughts has tripled. (USA Today, 12/7/04)

•The University of Georgia may add diversity criteria such as race and ethnicity to its admissions policy in time for the Fall 2005 class. The university dropped its race-conscious policy in 2001 after a federal judge ruled it unconstitutional, but the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in June that schools could use race as a factor in admissions as long as it isn't the only factor. (Macon Telegraph, 12/3/04)

•The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit invalidated the 10-year-old Solomon Amendment that requires universities to give campus access to military recruiters or forfeit federal funding. The decision was the first to hold that the law violated universities' free-speech rights under the First Amendment. (The Philadelphia Inquirer, 11/30/04)

•With the Solomon Amendment overturned, Harvard Law School is reinstating its ban of military recruiters because of the Pentagon's policy on gays in the military, which violates the school's nondiscrimination policies. (The Boston Globe, 12/2/04)