Today's news

October 13, 2003

Parents go online to feed student offspring
Worried parents are turning increasingly to the internet to dispatch "comfort hampers" of food to their sons and daughters at university, it was claimed yesterday. The trend has been identified by supermarkets Sainsbury's and Tesco, which noticed that an increasing number of online customers specify two delivery addresses, one of which is a hall of residence or a property in university cities.
( Times )

Tuition fees gain allure in cash-hit European campuses
Five years after Britain introduced tuition fees, university administrators across Europe are warming to charging students as governments cut grants. Holland, Austria, Italy, Spain and Portugal have all recently introduced tuition fees ranging from €600 to €1,450 a year. France has modest fees too, while in Germany a law that prevents them from being charged is now being challenged. It is only in Scandinavian countries that the principle of free education persists
( Guardian )

Public school undergraduates must pay up
Roy Hattersley, a firm believer in a graduate tax, comments that it is obscene for the taxpayer to subsidise the well-off at university.
( Guardian )

A-level plodders take refuge in social work degree
Social work comes bottom of a list of 170 courses that were ranked according to the A levels achieved by the undergraduates taking them, a report published in the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society reveals. Librarianship, ceramics, combined studies, creative therapies and creative arts also fared badly in the Manchester Metropolitan University study. Dentistry students are the highest achievers.
( Daily Mail )

Monkey offers hope to the childless
A rhesus monkey has given birth after receiving an ovary transplant at the Oregon National Primate Research Centre in Portland. The successful experiment brings hope of a family to women made infertile by cancer treatment or early menopause.
( Times )

Rare birds thrive on stubble, study shows
Farmers receiving grants to leave their fields as stubble rather than planting seed in the autumn are helping many of Britain's most rapidly declining bird species, according to an RSPB survey. The first detailed research into the scheme's effectiveness suggests that skylarks and yellowhammers, both on the "red list" of diminishing birds, are flocking to fields farmed in the traditional manner.
( Daily Telegraph )

Laban dance centre is shining example
The Laban dance centre in Deptford, southeast London, has won this year's Royal Institute of British Architect's Stirling prize. The centre was designed by the Swiss team Herzog & de Meuron, who gave Bankside power station its new lease of life as Tate Modern.
( Guardian, Independent )

Round-up of HE items in the weekend press
Oxford University may become private if government abandons plans for top-up fees ( Sunday Times ) Britain's ability to win top science accolades crippled by poor research funding ( Sunday Times )  ·   Working class graduates less likely to get jobs ( Independent on Sunday )  ·  Lord Butler says higher fees and two-tier university system could be fairest way for all ( Independent on Sunday )   ·  Thousands of students await money as fast-track loans applications fail ( Mail on Sunday )  ·   LSE head predicts transformation of higher education ( Financial Times October 11)  ·  IP2IPO has raised £30m from outside investors ( Financial Times October 11)  ·   Hefce reports that 7% of 2002 graduates did not immediately find work on graduating ( Guardian October 11).

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