Editor's Blog

Editor's Blog: One thing is for sure, Mason's next provost will heavily promote research

Over the past couple of weeks, we've heard from four finalists for Mason's next provost who presented their visions for the future of the university. A common strand for each presentation has been a commitment to boost Mason's research credentials by altering academic programs and increasing research funding.

Editor's Blog: Why is there so much disagreement about how much Medicaid expansion will affect Virginia?

Virginia Medicaid Expansion Debate: Explained

The topic is in the headlines several times a week, and has been designated as one of Governor McAuliffe’s top legislative priorities.

While Governor McAuliffe has made it one of his top legislative priorities, House GOP leaders have repeatedly said that it is unlikely for General Assembly to expand the program.

Editor's Blog: Virginia officials to study "Pay It Forward, "Pay It Back" program

In an online forum with Virginia21, a non-profit lobbying group that focuses on higher education issues, State Senator John Edwards spoke about a new tuition model that may alleviate some of the burden of college tuition.

Proposed state budget could provide support to Mason’s growing financial aid problem

Every year, Virginia undergraduates who demonstrate financial need get a part of their tuition covered by the student financial assistance program (VSFAP).

The amount of money allocated to financial need students has actually been rising steadily over the past few years. In 2007, $108 million was slated for the program, and about $150 million was allocated in 2012.

Editor's Blog: Mason's Board of Visitors donates overwhelmingly to Republican candidates

Conversation about last year's gubernatorial election was partly dominated by the role of campaign finance. Both major candidates raised a large amount of money, including millions from out-of-state donors, to help fund highly partisan campaigns for governor.

Editor’s Blog: Top higher education bills to watch in the upcoming General Assembly session

The Virginia General Assembly will convene its 2014 legislative session on January 8th. The session, which only lasts until the beginning of March, is a whirlwind of policy debate that affects all Virginians. As a public university, George Mason University is heavily influenced by decisions made by state policymakers. This year, there are a number of bills that could impact Mason and its students. Here is a brief roundup of some of those bills:

1. Restrictions on out-of-state enrollment

Editor’s Blog: Restrictions on out-of-state enrollment create space by increasing cost

For the past few years, a group of Virginia state legislators have repeatedly attempted to restrict out-of-state enrollment in the Commonwealth’s public universities.

Editor’s Blog: Mason’s funding problem in one question

At a regularly held budget forum on Oct. 10, two senior university officials painted an optimistic picture of the future of Mason’s finances, but emphasized that many challenges remain.

Provost Peter Stearns and Senior Vice President JJ Davis, presented a number of data sets revealing little support Mason receives as a public university. For example, out of Virginia’s six doctoral institutions, Mason receives the lowest per-FTE (full time equivalent) student funding. At the same time, the university spends 62 percent that of its peer institutions.

Editor's Blog: State's newest residents are more educated than the average Virginian

According to census reports, residents who have moved to Virginia from out-of-state or abroad have higher educational attainment than the state’s current residents.

As of 2012, about 51 percent of new residents moving to Virginia have a bachelor’s degree or higher. The state’s current average is 35 percent.

The data set, first published by Governing.com, described a number of characteristics of Virginia’s newest residents.

Of the state's new residents, 20 percent are foreign born and the median age is 27.