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Next Generation Learning Challenges Announces $12 Million in New Funding

Signaling the need for a fundamental change in the way education is designed and delivered across secondary and postsecondary institutions, Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC) today announced the availability of $12 million in grants for comprehensive models that apply technology to personalize students’ learning experiences, thereby improving the speed and depth by which they develop and master critical knowledge and skills.

Led by EDUCAUSE, NGLC is a collaborative, multi-year initiative created to address the barriers to educational innovation and tap the potential of technology to dramatically improve college readiness and completion in the United States, especially among low-income and minority students.

Next Generation Learning Challenges Announces $7 Million in Wave II Grants

Next Generation Learning Challenges, a multi-year program led by EDUCAUSE that will help address the challenges related to college readiness and completion, has announced $7 million in grants to 19 innovative, technology-enabled programs that are helping students master 7th- to 9th-grade-level math and literacy aligned with the Common Core State Standards.

Next Generation Learning Challenges Names First Grant Recipients

Next Generation Learning Challenges, a collaborative initiative led by EDUCAUSE, announced its first set of grants today to identify and expand innovative technology-enabled approaches that improve college completion in the United States. From a pool of more than 600 applicants, 29 organizations will receive a total of $10.6 million through grants ranging from $180,000 to $750,000. An additional $5.4 million may be awarded to some of the most promising projects after the 15-month grant period concludes.

Each grant recipient demonstrated potential to expand its technology-enabled solution to help students succeed in higher education through one or more of four key approaches:

EDUCAUSE and NGLC Announce New Call for Proposals

Next Generation Learning Challenges, a collaborative, multi-year initiative led by EDUCAUSE, today announced a new round of challenge grants that will provide up to $10 million to expand promising technology tools and applications that help more students master seventh- through ninth-grade math and literacy competencies, which are critical to college and career readiness. The initiative, which is already supported by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, also announced today a $1.4 million investment from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation to broaden funding for the program’s grants to innovators. (Read the entire press release.)

Green Summit 2008: Personal Agendas

Before heading home, attendees are listing the various ways that they’ll pledge to work toward a “greener, brighter” future for higher education. Their contributions range from simply “learning more” to promoting collaborations at their campus. Several attendees pledged to “bring the message home,” organizing brown bag lunches or mini-Summits around the issue of Green IT, writing articles for campus papers, or encouraging their campuses to adopt more stringent policies and CO2 reduction goals. Measuring their own energy consumption was also a critical issue, as well as working toward better metric assessments for IT and introducing IT into current and future assessment tools. Before the session ended, many attendees were already staying true to their promises to encourage more information sharing by uploading their own resources and URLs to a Summit wiki. A complete list of attendee-generated resources will be included in the Summit whitepaper.

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Green Summit 2008: Setting the agenda

After a day of discussion and reflection, attendees are beginning to sketch out rather precise ideas about what a green agenda for higher education might look like. During the last session, they shared their lists of what they wanted others to do to push for greater sustainability.

Several action items were shared across the boards. There seems to be a general consensus that the community needs more ways to share information, from case study repositories to research studies that really dig at specific numbers and outcomes. Several groups mentioned further exploring virtualization and changes to data centers, or online learning and telecommuting. Others wanted to ensure IT is part of the green discussion, making it part of the STARS assessment or ensuring that grant seekers for government money include a “green” aspect to their application.

Other highlights included:

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Green Summit 2008: Eight ways to think green

As brainstorming continues, a green notepad from the NSF is circulating the room, with a pen clipped to the top made of recycled currency. On it, they offer eight ways to think green at the desktop:

  • Consider the environment before you print
  • Opt for printing double-sided documents
  • If you need to share documents with colleagues – use Sharepoint
  • Shut off your monitor when away from your computer
  • Every time you leave the room for awhile, turn off the lights
  • Recycle paper, plastic, and aluminum
  • Voltage matters -- Turn off printers and unplug mobile chargers when not in use
  • Encourage others to go green!

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Green Summit 2008: Hummers and servers

After hearing what others have been doing, attendees have broken back into their groups to brainstorming actions that they’d like for others to take. In one group, an attendee noted just how helpful it is to have an “elevator speech” to make the case. He said the one image he took away from the first day was the comparison of a computer server on campus to a Hummer. He said that the next time someone approaches him to ask about new equipment, he wants to be able to make the case, “Do we really need this? Or, can we do it smarter another way?”

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Green Summit 2008: The Impact of Higher Ed

After doing some quick scribbling on his napkin, one Summit attendee suggested that his numbers suggest institutions of higher ed could be responsible for 10 percent of the United States’ carbon output. Other attendees suggested that the number is probably closer to 4 percent. Either way, it’s higher than cement and steel and most eyes around the room doubled in size during the discussion.

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Green Summit 2008: ECAR Research Bulletin

Don Spicer, an ECAR senior fellow and associate vice chancellor and CIO at the University System of Maryland is updating attendees and explaining the work behind one of the latest ECAR Research Bulletins, "Climate Change, Campus Commitments, and IT."

The bulletin analyzes how several IT offices, largely at Maryland colleges and universities, are responding to the challenges issued in the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitmentinitiative. The bulletin also leaves readers with, "Key Questions to Ask," including:

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