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Below is the most recent Higher Ed Issues Landscape Report, which uses Canary listening technology to analyze the top conversation trends in higher education and highlights qualitative and quantitative insights on the topics and universities that drove coverage.


What We’re Watching:

Tenure Trending

    • Florida lawmakers added an amendment to a larger bill that would allow for reviews for tenured professors every five years. 
    • A recent NBC News opinion piece called Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick’s intent to end tenure a “new attack on academic freedom” and an “American embarrassment.” The author argued tenure mitigates researcher reprisals and benefits talent attraction and diversity across higher education.
    • Several UT Austin faculty participated in a SXSW EDU panel in which they discussed “troubling threats” from the Texas legislature around academic freedom and employment. One professor shared cautious optimism, saying “UT’s leadership has the faculty’s back in this fight.”

Campus Surveys Reveal Issues & Opportunities

    • Several University of Texas at Austin student groups published the results of a campus community survey, finding that “LGBTQIA+ students on average feel less safe than non-LGBTQIA+ identifying students.”
    • UT’s Cockrell School of Engineering published the results of a climate survey in which some students of color said they “didn’t feel respected by their peers.”
    • Several universities including the University of Oregon and the University of Denver launched workplace climate surveys this month. For universities doing the same, consider shaping questions around what pandemic teaching methods “should live on” (The Conversation).

Student Housing Case Reaches Final Stages

The California Supreme Court officially declined to lift an enrollment cap for the University of California-Berkeley, setting broad implications in motion for other public universities in the state. With student admissions announcements due out in the next few weeks, UCB has begun proactive mitigation measures including partnering with the city to house a portion of the homeless population in order to make room for future student housing developments. 

COVID-19 in Higher Ed:
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact university campuses, we will continue to monitor coverage around emerging trends
    • Two Santa Clara University students filed a lawsuit against the school claiming that its COVID-19 vaccine and additional third dose mandate are unconstitutional. 
      • KCBS – 2.6K Engagements
    • Chancellor Plowman at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville announced that students, faculty, and staff will be required to wear face coverings on campus during the Fall 2022 semester. 
      • Knoxville News Sentinel – 446 Engagements
    • The University of Connecticut announced it will no longer require home-game fans to wear face coverings or provide proof of vaccination, citing “improving conditions” surrounding COVID-19. 
      • UConn Huskies – 373 Engagements

Trending topics by % increase

Student-Athlete Health & Safety:

    • Mar 04 | Today | 63K Engagements: “The parents of Stanford University soccer star Katie Meyer believe their daughter’s fear over potential disciplinary action from the school may have contributed to her death earlier this week. Steve and Gina Meyer are speaking out in the hope of preventing other parents from facing the same tragedy after confirming the statement by an official from the County of Santa Clara on Thursday that their 22-year-old daughter died by suicide.”
    • Mar 06 | Twitter | Audrey Voboril | 228 Retweets:Student-Athletes, Guardians, Support Staff, & Coaches remember this: Mental health is just as important as physical health. Being an athlete is physically & mentally taxing. We spend so much time training the body that we forget the mind. A sound mind helps a strong body. ”


NCAA Violations:

    • Mar 08 | WBRZ | 107 Engagements: “The LSU men’s basketball team, along with head coach Will Wade, could face strong penalties after the team received a Notice of Allegations from the NCAA Tuesday. The allegations stem from an investigation into Wade’s recruiting practices in 2017.”
    • Mar 07 | The Advocate | 76 Engagements: “Former LSU assistant football coach James Cregg was fired last year after he admitted violating NCAA rules, a university lawyer argued Monday to a Baton Rouge judge. But an attorney for Cregg, who is suing LSU for alleged breach of contract, told state District Judge Wilson Fields that the NCAA has never determined that Cregg broke any NCAA rules.”


Buildings and Monuments:

    • Mar 08 | Fire | 797 Engagements: “A history professor advocated for removing Confederate statues. Then his college fired him. Today, history professor Michael Phillips sued Collin College, its president, H. Neil Matkin, and other university officials for violating his constitutional rights by firing him for talking about history and criticizing the college’s COVID-19 policies.”
    • Mar 04 | Twitter | Larry Sabato | 48 Retweets: “Pleased to see @UVA Naval ROTC building renamed for the late Sen. John W. Warner (R-VA). Warner guest-lectured in my classes almost every year during his 5 terms in the Senate (1979-2009). Students enjoyed him greatly. I will teach in Warner Hall with pride.”


Title IX:

Trending topics by total volume


    • Mar 02 | Twitter | Jennifer Bendery | 363 Retweets:Iowa’s state auditor says GOP Gov. Kim Reynolds — who delivered the GOP response to Biden’s State of the Union address last night — has to return ~$450,000 in federal coronavirus relief funds that were used to pay for 21 of her staff members.”
    • Mar 04 | Twitter | Mark D. Levine | 266 Retweets: “A new analysis by @nycHealthy & @Yale has produced a mind-blowing graph. The green line is actual # of deaths from covid in NYC. Purple line is the # of deaths that would have occurred without vaccines. Approx 48,000 lives saved in our city. Stunning.”


Cost of Attendance:

    • Mar 04 | Twitter | Alex Sammon | 815 Retweets: “New: The Biden Education Dept is hauling a bankrupt cancer patient to court days before she begins a series of surgeries that might leave her permanently disabled to contest her claim that she cannot pay her $96k in student loan debt.”


Mental Health:

    • Mar 04 | CNN | 39.8K Engagements:Stanford University star soccer player Katie Meyer died by suicide, her mother told NBC’s “Today” show during an emotional interview Friday. Meyer, a senior who helped secure the 2019 NCAA championship title for the Cardinal, was found dead in her dorm room on Tuesday, according to the university.”
    • Mar 07 | Twitter | Audric Warren | 62 Retweets: “A lesson we can all learn from the tragedy of Katie Meyer is that student-athletes can excel AND still feel the weight from an accumulation of years of pressure, anxiety, depression, and isolation. Just because you don’t see it doesnt mean it doesn’t exist. They are still human.”



    • Mar 08 | News Nation Now | 274 Engagements: “A swimmer at the University of Pennsylvania said the situation surrounding transgender swimmer Lia Thomas is “insane.” Thomas formerly competed as a member of Penn’s men’s swimming team for three years, identifying as a male. Now, she is shattering records on the women’s team as one of the top swimmers in the nation since starting her transition. Some of her teammates say her success in the pool isn’t fair. They have not shared their stories publicly — until now. ”
    • Mar 08 | Twitter | Kennu Xu | 71 Retweets:Harvard’s discrimination against Asians is obvious even without adding SATs – but adding SATs adds a numerical element to quantify the disadvantage. Asians have to score 450 points higher than Black Americans, 150 points higher than whites, to have the same chance of admission.”

Trending universities/colleges by % increase

University of North Carolina: Athletics 

    • Mar 06 | 247 Sports | 9.7K Engagements:North Carolina needed a complete team effort to shock the basketball world at Cameron Indoor Stadium. The Tar Heels rose to the occasion, time and time again, in upsetting No. 4 Duke, 94-81, and handing Mike Krzyzewski a stunning loss in his final home game as the Blue Devils’ head coach.”


Duke University: Athletics

    • Mar 05 | Twitter | Trajan Langdon | 409 Retweets:Last home game for Coach K this evening. Should be a great one and emotional at the same time. Imagine a Head Coach starting at any university today and coaching there until 2064! Amazing what he has done. Blessed to be there for his last one on Coach K court today. Go Duke!”


Brown University: Funding Research 

    • Mar 02 | News from Brown | 215 Engagements:Brown sets new $4 billion goal, extends BrownTogether fundraising campaign through 2024. Priorities for the campaign’s extension include raising funds for research and teaching in medicine, public health, engineering and the arts, as well as student financial aid, career services and Brown Athletics.”
    • Mar 02 | Twitter | Gregg Gonsalves | 212 Retweets: “.@SalomonJA at @Stanford and @ambilinski at @BrownUniversity uncovered something particularly gruesome in the CDC’s new metrics. The CDC doesn’t kick in new prevention measures until we have greater than 1000 death per day. 7/”


University of Pennsylvania: Discrimination 

    • Mar 03 | ABC 6 | 2.4K Engagements: “Lia Thomas, a University of Pennsylvania women’s team swimmer, who is shattering records and reinvigorating the conversation surrounding transgender athletes, is finally sharing her story.”
    • Mar 08 | Twitter | Rick McHugh | 348 Retweets: “EXCLUSIVE: A teammate of transgender Penn swimmer Lia Thomas speaks out. Calls the situation ‘Insane,’ ‘Not fair,’ and says HER rights have been violated. #LiaThomas #UPenn #Swimming

Trending universities/colleges by total volume

University of North Carolina: Athletics 


Harvard: Alumni Discrimination

    • Mar 07 | FOX News | 8K Engagements: “President Biden’s nominee to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer was part of a Harvard University student group that hosted a speaker with a history of anti-Semitic remarks, Fox News Digital has learned. Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson was a member of the Black Students Association (BSA) her senior year at Harvard, according to her yearbook, when the Harvard BSA invited Leonard Jeffries, the controversial then-City University of New York professor of Black studies and Black studies department head, to speak”
    • Mar 07 | Business Insider | 2.7K Engagements: “Within a week of the invasion, the 19-year-old Harvard University student and his friend conceived, developed, and launched a website designed to seamlessly connect Ukrainian refugees with people willing to host them:”


Stanford: Mental Health Student-Athlete Health & Safety

    • Mar 03 | The Daily Wire | 21.9K Engagements:Stanford University soccer player Katie Meyer died by suicide, her parents revealed on the “Today” show on Friday, noting that concern over potential disciplinary action from the school may have been a factor in her death earlier this week.”


Ohio State: Athletics Sexual Misconduct

    • Mar 04 | Twitter | Field Yates | 1.1K Retwets:Ohio State’s Garrett Wilson (4.38) and Chris Olave (4.39) became the 2nd pair of WR teammates since 2006 to run sub-4.4 40 times at the same combine. The only other duo? Terry McLaurin and Parris Campbell.”
    • Mar 09 | Twitter | Ricky Davila | 851 Retweets: “Looking forward to George Clooney’s upcoming docuseries about Ohio State’s sexual abuse scandal since it will more than likely expose pervert Jim Jordan’s role in both enabling it and covering it up.”

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