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Compare Nonprofit, For-Profit Online Degree Programs

While there’s still a stigma against for-profits, the quality of education varies widely within the sector, experts say.

To some students, a for-profit online degree program seems like a risky option.

“I’ve seen a lot of reports for a lot of years about how for-profit schools have pretty much based their incomes on the ability for students to get federal financial aid,” says 30-year-old Matt Warner, a cybersecurity and information assurance master’s student at the nonprofit, online Western Governors University.

Though he’s personally hesitant about for-profits, he suggests prospective students focus more on factors such as cost and the degrees offered.

For California resident Carlos Ramirez, enrolling in an online doctoral program in health administration at the for-profit University of Phoenix was a no-brainer. Ramirez previously earned his bachelor’s and master’s at the school and was satisfied with its flexibility and student support.

Experts say in online education, a school’s classification as a for-profit versus nonprofit tells prospective online students little about overall quality.


“I think it’s less about the sector and more on how attentive the institution is to meeting the needs of students, to understanding best practices, to preparing their faculty for this robust learning experience,” says Karen Pedersen, chief knowledge officer for the Online Learning Consortium, an organization aiming to improve online higher education.

For-profit institutions have faced criticism in recent years for questionable recruitment practices, low graduation rates and high student debt. Though employers today are becoming more receptive to accepting candidates with for-profit, online degrees, there’s still a stigma around them, experts say.

[Discover how employers view for-profit online bachelor’s degrees.]

“It’s a distinction that has gotten a lot of press over the last many years, and I’m not sure that it’s warranted,” says Betty Vandenbosch, president of the for-profit Kaplan University, which delivers many degrees online.

When for-profit online degree programs started becoming more prevalent around 1999, they accepted almost anybody who applied, including those who weren’t sufficiently prepared for college, says Kathleen Ives, OLC’s CEO and executive director, who has served as faculty for both for-profits and nonprofits. That, she says, contributed to low graduation rates and high debt for those who dropped out.

That initial focus primarily on corporate profits “has tainted much of the for-profit sector. And not fairly, because the for-profit institutions are just as diverse as the nonprofit institutions,” says David Schejbal, dean of continuing education, outreach and e-learning at the University of Wisconsin—Extension, which coordinates continuing education and online programs across 26 statewide campuses.

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posted in: Blogging, California, Diversity, EmployerNews, Florida, Georgia, Graduation, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, New York, News, North Carolina, Personal, Wisconsin

Gender diversity at work: using education to tackle the backlash

Conversations about the advancement of women at work are now so commonplace that it can seem like a foregone conclusion that, someday soon, women will have equal opportunities and pay.

But then you start wading through the comments under news articles on gender diversity and you realise there is a very angry, resentful undertow from some (mostly men) who demonstrate a fear that when women win, men and families will lose.

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posted in: Blogging, Diversity, EmployerNews, News

POLL: Women more concerned about gender diversity in the workplace

Women business leaders are about twice as likely as their male counterparts to say their company should put more effort into increasing gender diversity, a new poll said.

One-quarter of the women polled said their employer should be doing more to advance female employees compared to about 12 percent of the men, according to the latest CohnReznick-New Jersey Chamber of Commerce Business Climate Survey, released Wednesday.

The survey, which focused on women in the workplace, revealed “a disconnect” in men’s and women’s perceptions of gender diversity, said Philip Mandel, regional managing partner at CohnReznick, a New York City-based accounting firm.

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posted in: Diversity, EmployerNews, News

Finding common ground in workplace diversity

The recent shootings of Black men throughout our country and police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge have ignited discussions about diversity in the community as well as the workforce.
What is the meaning of diversity? Most Americans would say diversity incorporates race, gender and ethnicity and stops there. But I believe diversity involves much more than that.
Though I agree the above three components represent some of the primary dimensions of diversity, we must also include age, sexual orientation and physical and mental ability. And there are secondary dimensions: religion, lifestyle, style of dress, language, communication style, personality style, geographic location, learning style and even military service. All of these components of diversity are part of today’s workplace.

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posted in: Diversity, EmployerNews, News

3 Ways We Can Increase Diversity In Corporate America

Diversity in corporate leadership, especially among fast-growth companies, is no longer a nice-to-have, a buzz-word, or a marketing ploy. It’s an economic necessity.

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posted in: Diversity, News

Davos 2016: it’s time to talk about gender inequality

The Girls’ Lounge at the World Economic Forum is spearheading an important debate about the lack of women at the heart of the business world

“I think every woman in this room has the same question. What’s the hold-up?” asks Bloomberg Television anchor Stephanie Ruhle, as she looks at two male C-level executives on either side of her.

The hold-up she’s referring to is the glacial speed of improvement in gender equality in the workplace. It’s the penultimate day of the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) annual meeting in Davos, where men outnumber women five to one. Ruhle is moderating an intimate session at The Girls’ Lounge, an informal space set up as a destination for women attendees, otherwise known as “the 18%”.

Since day one of the conference, which brought in 2,500 elite leaders in business, media and government, The Girls’ Lounge has held continuous discussions featuring powerhouse influencers, including Arianna Huffington, Twitter chief operating officer Adam Bain and Facebook vice-president of global marketing solutions Carolyn Everson.

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posted in: Diversity

How CIOs can help promote gender diversity in the workplace

There has been a lot of discussion about diversity in IT over the last couple of years. After releasing statistics showing a general lack of diversity among their workers, several tech companies, including Microsoft, Intel and HP, vowed to double their efforts to promote more diverse workplaces.

There has been a lot of discussion about diversity in IT over the last couple of years. After releasing statistics showing a general lack of diversity among their workers, several tech companies, including Microsoft, Intel and HP, vowed to double their efforts to promote more diverse workplaces.

Some of those efforts have slightly improved racial diversity. Gender diversity, however, has remained a challenge.

On average, women comprise about one-third of the workforce, according to a recent analysis of nine major tech companies by Fortune. And the higher up you go, the worse it gets.

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posted in: Diversity

Intel Smashes Diversity Hiring Goal

College campuses are littered with flyers promoting their diverse student bodies, and city officials boast of their neighborhoods with residents from varied economic and racial backgrounds

College campuses are littered with flyers promoting their diverse student bodies, and city officials boast of their neighborhoods with residents from varied economic and racial backgrounds. But although several Silicon Valley giants, like Mozilla and Dolby, have adopted “blind” hiring processes to boost the number of women and people of color on staff, plenty of other tech companies tend to go radio silent on their talent recruitment efforts

With Wednesday’s release of its annual report on diversity and inclusion, Intel bucked the secrecy trend. The report reveals that Intel smashed its goal of having 40 percent of new hires in 2015 being women or underrepresented minorities. With a record 43 percent of new hires falling into one of those two demographics, the Santa Clara, California company exceeded its target.

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posted in: Diversity

Using Technology to Drive Diversity in Your Business

Whether your focus is B2B or B2C, a socially diverse team is just good business sense. It isn’t just because your organization should reflect our increasingly diverse society—research shows collaborating with people of different race, gender, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, economic status, and life experience encourages creative thinking and drives business growth.

But the road to diversity must be paved with more than good intentions. If workers, clients, and business partners aren’t already judging how effective your company’s efforts to be more diverse are, they soon will be. Being inclusive is an effort that starts from the ground up—from recruitment to retention. Tech solutions can help equalize the process and reduce weak spots.

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posted in: Diversity

Lack of STEM skills holding back workplace diversity & women in tech

News: Women still earn less, and less likely to hold senior positions in IT, than men. Women are still under represented and underpaid in the IT industry, a new report from Deloitte has shown. In its TMT Predictions 2016 report, the company found that under a quarter of jobs in IT in developed countries would be held by women by the end of 2016, which it says is at best the same as the figure for 2015, and possibly lower.

The issue, which the firm says has been recognised since at least 2005, costs the global IT industry billions annually. In the UK alone the cost is $4bn every year. It says that the cost means having a roughly 50/50 gender split in the industry “seems a reasonable goal over the long term”.

Regina Moran, CEO Fujitsu UKI, said that the predictions “are bad news for our industry,” and “gender balance isn’t a ‘nice to have’, it’s a must have.”

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posted in: Diversity, EmployerNews, News

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