Professor Richard H ThalerUniversity of Chicago professor Richard H. Thaler – whose work has persuaded many economists to pay more attention to human behavior and government officials to pay more attention to economics – was awarded the 2017 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences on October 9.

Thaler, who teaches economics and behavioral science at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, is a leading expert in a relatively new field that combines psychology and economics. He is considered a pioneer for moving economics toward a more realistic understanding of human behavior, and for using the resulting insights to improve public policy.

Born in East Orange, New Jersey, Thaler received his undergraduate degree from Case Western Reserve University in 1967 nd his PhD in economics from the University of Rochester in 1974. He has spent his career developing an idea that challenges mainstream economics: humans aren’t always rational and they don’t always act in their best interests.

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Every year, seniors in college start to weigh what their options could be if they attend a graduate program. Many factors are considered when making that decision. Illinois schools have tried to take those factors into consideration and have been ranked highly recently for offering some of the best graduate programs in the country.

Recently, the U.S. News & World Report revealed rankings for graduate school programs. The rankings are intended to help prospective students when they are looking for a graduate program of their choice. The disciplines included in the ratings are business, law, engineering, education, medicine and nursing.

Illinois was well represented throughout the rankings.

UChicago Booth SchoolThe University of Chicago Booth School of BusinessThe University of Chicago Booth School of Business and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern both ranked in the top five nationwide in schools to receive a master of business administration degree.

Northwestern also received a top 10 ranking for law and education. The University of Chicago joined Northwestern as a top 10 school for a law degree as well ranking No. 3 nationwide.

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign also was awarded with a top 10 ranking for those looking to get a graduate degree in engineering.

Graduate students across the country and world attend Illinois schools to get a top-notch education. With these most recent rankings, that does not look like it will end any time soon.

Pulliam Hall SIUSouthern Illinois University Carbondale was recently recognized for the outstanding services it provides for non-traditional students. The NASPA-Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education honored the college with the 2016 Annual Outstanding Undergraduate Adult Learner Program.

The university’s adult learner population is more than 30 percent of its total student population, and SIUC houses the Non-Traditional Student Services (NTSS) office. Deborah Barnett, who works with non-traditional student services, says that the award shows a longstanding commitment of the university.

“SIU has a longstanding history of support for adult learners,” Barnett said. “In addition, SIU’s history of supporting veteran and military-connected students is shown through numerous annual awards and being designated a Military-Friendly School.”

That office provides a variety of services to students who are financially independent, have delayed college enrollment rather than attending right after high school or are returning to college after interrupting their higher education.

One way in which the program has excelled is the way it attempts to communicate with adult learners. The NTSS office communicates through social media providing short videos like the “Monday Morning Minute.”

It also provides study spaces for students with children and an opportunity for family ID cards, which allow family members to receive necessary campus services.

“We have a lot to be proud of at SIU and in the state of Illinois,” Barnett said. “Even though we face challenges in Illinois, SIU is committed to serving students with excellence.”

Excellence in working with non-traditional students has become the norm at Southern Illinois University. It is just one reason it is a top-tier college in Illinois. Congratulations to Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

inthenews internetInternet access is an invaluable resource. Without it many of our students are unprepared for the future that awaits them in college classrooms, professional careers and everyday life. In decades prior, access to online information was not as widespread or important as it is now.

The EducationSuperHighway 2016 State of States Annual Report found that 83 percent of Illinois School districts representing 1,099,120 students met connectivity goals. The progress made last year tops the 71 percent of school districts with acceptable internet in 2015. The schools and libraries universal service support program, also known as the E-rate program, helps schools and libraries  get affordable broadband.

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Loyola University ChicagoOne of the hardest things for many members of the military when re-acclimating to civilian life is to start or go back into schooling. Some even have been out of school for decades when they decide to return to finish a degree or start a new one. Many schools throughout Illinois are taking steps to make that transition easier.

Victory Media is an organization that has been working with schools and employers throughout the country to make the transition from military life to civilian life much easier. Recently, they announced their list of the top military friendly schools throughout the country.

Victory Media used multiple metrics to determine who the best of the best were. Some metrics for schools include student veteran retention, graduation, job placement and loan repayment. Schools were recognized for the support services they provide to veteran students throughout their degrees.

Nearly 40 Illinois schools were awarded the honor of being military friendly. Loyola University in Chicago was awarded the highest honor by being declared a top 10 graduate school for how military friendly it was.

If schools were within 20 percent of the top 10 scores, they received a gold medal. The following Illinois schools were gold medal recipients: Illinois State University, Richard J. Daley College, Robert Morris University Illinois and Western Illinois University.

For the complete list of military friendly schools, click here.

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