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NV conservation group supports FERC's transmission planning rule; Memorial Day weekend includes Tornadoes and record-high temperatures; A focus on the Farm Bill for Latino Advocacy Week in D.C; and Southeast Alaska is heating homes with its rainfall.

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U.S. Supreme Court allows South Carolina gerrymander that dilutes Black voters, Sen. Ted Cruz refuses to say if he'll accept 2024 election results, and Trump calls Mar-a-Lago search an attempt to have him assassinated.

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Smokey Bear thought only "you" could prevent forest fires, but decomposing mushrooms may also help, a Native American community in Oregon is achieving healthcare sovereignty, and Colorado farmers hope fast-maturing, drought-tolerant seeds will better handle climate change.

Tech help comes to the college admissions process

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Monday, April 1, 2024   

This story is based on reporting by Olivia Sanchez for The Hechinger Report.
The broadcast version is by Terri Dee for Indiana News Service, reporting for The Hechinger Report-Public News Service Collaboration



College admission counselors generally review an applicant's grade-point average, school activities and volunteer work to decide if a student would be a good fit. But some institutions are looking beyond the 'traditional' student profile with an online tool before granting acceptance.

Technology called the "Common App" includes a question which allows a potential student to explain their outside obligations.

Tricia Ross Anderson, college admission program director for the Making Caring Common project at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, said many of the skills can contribute to a successful academic experience.

"I think many colleges are looking at this as, this is a student who can manage a lot. And this is really impressive, right?" Ross Anderson pointed out. "You might have time management skills; if you're translating, you've got language skills and translation skills. So, I think this can speak to a lot of students' strengths and skills, absolutely."

The app asks if the applicant is responsible for caring for siblings, transporting an older family member, or managing their finances. The belief is if a student is getting good grades while managing multiple responsibilities, their tenacity and time management skills could be good indicators of academic ability.

Enrollment numbers for Illinois colleges and universities for this school year total nearly 696,000. Most institutions are unaware of an applicant's home and family responsibilities.

Ross Anderson noted the app allows better insight into a student's life. She also encouraged students to include the information in college applications.

"The tricky part is that a lot of students don't know to include this information as part of their application," Ross Anderson explained. "Then there's not a great place to put it on the current application. I think all colleges are happy to review it when it is included."

Since 2022, about two dozen colleges have accessed the app while reviewing student applications, and 66% of students who applied to a dozen colleges checked at least one box on the app.

This story was produced with original reporting by Olivia Sanchez for The Hechinger Report.

Support for this reporting was provided by Lumina Foundation.


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