Fewer minority students, particularly blacks and Hispanics, are being admitted to elite colleges and universities, instead being sent to less competitive schools, according to a new study by University of Michigan researchers, The Chronicle of Higher Education reported. This trend, which has resulted in wealthier and less diverse student bodies at top schools, coincides with an increase in the academic preparedness of members of minority groups. Increasing selectivity at elite schools, however, has outpaced the rise in minority students' qualifications. The study also found that colleges are giving increasing weight to applicants' extracurricular activities, without regard to race.
Schools that previously did away with binding early decision and non-binding early action admissions options are re-adopting the policies, Inside Higher Ed reported. The movement comes after an apparent nationwide shift away from early admissions programs, which critics claim favor wealthy students. The University of Virginia, which had eliminated its early decision option in 2006, adopted an early action option Nov. 16. The University said this decision was a response to demand from students who want their choice of university to be resolved early. Early admission programs typically have higher acceptance rates, although some admissions deans say that students who apply early are often more qualified than applicants in the regular decision pool. Officials from Harvard University, which abolished its early admissions option in 2006, told Inside Higher Ed that early admissions programs are disadvantageous to minority students, who often lack guidance in the college admissions process.
The producer of the alcoholic energy drink Four Loko will remove caffeine and two other ingredients from the drink, The New York Times reported. Phusion Products, which produces Four Loko, said the change came in anticipation of action by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration against Four Loko and similar beverages. Four Loko a controversial drink that has an alcohol content of 12 percent and as much caffeine as a cup of coffee has received recent national attention following a number of reports of young people becoming sick after consuming it. Doctors have recently spoken on the beverage's dangers, noting that caffeine masks the effects of the alcohol, The Times reported. Phusion Products representatives disagreed with the doctors' claims, saying the drinks are harmless.