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Monday, July 15, 2024

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After the Trump assassination attempt, defining democracy gets even harder; Trump picks Sen. JD Vance of Ohio, a once-fierce critic turned loyal ally, as his GOP running mate; DC residents push back on natural gas infrastructure build-up a new law allows youth on Medi-Cal to consent to mental health treatment.

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Former President Trump is injured but safe after an attempted assassination many condemn political violence. Democrats' fears intensify over Biden's run. And North Carolina could require proof of citizenship to vote.

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Enticing remote workers to move is a new business strategy in rural America, Eastern Kentucky preservationists want to save the 20th century home of a trailblazing coal miner, and a rule change could help small meat and poultry growers and consumers.

Report: Students Happy with College's 'Digital Transformation'

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Monday, March 27, 2023   

Digital learning has become the new normal for colleges since the pandemic, and a report finds community college students are largely satisfied with this change.

"The Digital Transformation of the Community College" from Bay View Analytics found 79% of students gave online courses an 'A' or 'B' grade for meeting their educational needs.

Joe Thiel, interim deputy commissioner for academic, research and student affairs for the Montana University System, said the pandemic was a catalyst for improving online learning.

"A lot of faculty, a lot of campuses became more thoughtful but also more entrepreneurial in terms of how to use online wisely," Thiel observed.

Thiel pointed out Montana saw a slow but steady increase in students taking courses fully online before the pandemic. Levels are even higher now. He explained online coursework fits better with some people's schedules, such as adult learners with jobs, or with where people live.

Thiel noted online education has advantages in a large, rural state like Montana. For example, he said Flathead Valley Community College in northwest Montana was able to work with Miles Community College on the other side of the state to help the college stand up a licensed practical nurse program.

"That benefits both that community, it benefits both of the colleges, but most importantly it means that a lot of the pathways that are most in demand for students," Thiel outlined. "They're now available closer to where more rural students live than they were before."

Thiel added the move online also means colleges have to rethink the services they provide, such as library access, advising and counseling.

"If more of our student population is attending from a distance, we have to invest in those services in ways that we didn't before so that they can be accessed from a distance," Thiel emphasized.

Support for this reporting was provided by Lumina Foundation.


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"I truly love our Country, and love you all, and look forward to speaking to our Great Nation this week from Wisconsin," wrote Former President Donald Trump on social media. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

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