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It’s that time of year when gray and harbor seals come ashore to give birth, but most of the birthing will happen north of us.

For harbor seals, Rhode Island is kind of their Florida. They arrive when the weather gets cold and leave by baseball season. URI emeritus research scientist Robert Kenny said harbor seals then go north to give birth, and there’s a good reason why that won’t happen on Rhode Island’s shores.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Second Congressional District Republican Rhue Reis joins Political Roundtable this week to discuss his challenge to Democratic Congressman Jim Langevin; arming URI police; the intensifying GOP gubernatorial primary between Ken Block and Allan Fung; and the outlook on litigating the 2011 overhaul of the state pension system.

URI Breaks Ground On New Center For LGBTQ Community

Apr 16, 2014
URI

The University of Rhode Island broke ground this morning on a center for the school’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer community. The center is unique among college campuses.

URI says it’s the only school in the nation to design and build a center specifically for the LGBTQ community.  State officials were on hand to celebrate the groundbreaking, including Governor Lincoln Chafee, and state senator Frank Ferri, who championed Rhode Island’s push for legal same-sex marriages.  Annie Russell is the center’s director.

RIPR FILE

The University of Rhode Island announced today it will arm its on-campus police force with guns.  It's the only public higher education institution in the state to do so.

The University of Rhode Island says it has no immediate plans to stop using the SAT as a requirement for admission, despite criticism that has led to an overhaul of the test.

SAT testing company The College Board has unveiled a series of changes taking effect in 2016, which include fewer obscure vocabulary words and making the essay section optional.

URI Director of Admissions Cynthia Bonn tells Rhode Island Public Radio that her team rarely ever looks at the essay section of the test as it is, but she thinks the other changes will be helpful.

The union representing University of Rhode Island professors has endorsed Providence Mayor Angel Taveras for governor.

The political action committee representing professors represented by the American Association of University Professors at URI voted unanimously to endorse the campaign of Taveras, who is running for the Democratic nomination for governor.

Courtesy: URI

Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State John Kerry congratulated the University of Rhode Island Friday for being selected to take part in a presidential initiative to send more students to Latin America. URI is one of four school selected for the project.

The goal of the presidential initiative is have 100,000 American students studying in Latin America and to bring 100,000 Latin American students to the United States.

Wikimedia

A University of Rhode Island professor says the state is seeing an unprecedented number of snowy owls this year.

The snowy owl lives in the Arctic, but when its population explodes and there is stiff competition for food, many fly south. That’s what’s happened this year, where sightings of the owl have been seen as far south as Bermuda. University of Rhode Island ecology professor Peter Paton said Rhode Island has received 15 reports of sightings.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

The University of Rhode Island plans to unveil a new neuroscience research institute, thanks to the single largest private donation in university history. The institute will add to the Ocean State’s growing expertise in brain science.

John Bender / RIPR

As public schools focus on raising test scores and getting more students ready for college, there is new scrutiny on teachers and the schools that teach them.

Rhode Island’s the Board of Education is scheduled to vote tonight on new standards for teacher preparation programs.

Rhode Island Public Radio's education reporter Elisabeth Harrison spoke with Karen Castagno, head of the education school at Rhode Island College who explained some of the changes they are looking at.

Courtesy URI

The University of Rhode Island is introducing a new winter semester similar to the Rhode Island School of Design’s signature “Wintersession.” The condensed term, which university offcials are calling “J-Term,” will run from January 2nd to January 17th.

John Bender

Minority students and faculty are in relatively short supply at the University of Rhode Island, but efforts are underway to improve their numbers. Rhode Island Public Radio Education Reporter and Morning Edition Host Elisabeth Harrison sat down with URI's Vice President of Community, Equity and Diversity Naomi Thompson to talk about the challenges to increasing diversity on URI's campus.

RI State Police Crack Down on Underage Drinking

Sep 19, 2013
Flo Jonic / RIPR

State police are going all out this year to combat underage drinking. A task force has been monitoring places where underage drinking has historically been a problem.

State police Colonel Steven O’Donnell said a task force comprised of state, municipal and campus police has been formed to address the problem of underage drinking.   Since the beginning of September

they’ve investigated 30 nightclubs and several house parties near college campuses. Twenty-six people were summoned to appear in court on charges of alcohol possession by an underage person.

URI Prof: Signs Show an Improving RI Economy

Sep 16, 2013

A University of Rhode Island economics professor who tracks the state’s economy every month finds it was in good shape for the month of July.

Professor Leonard Lardaro says nine of 12 indicators he tracks are in positive territory.  The only lagging indicators are government employment, the size of the labor force and new claims for unemployment.

Overall, Lardaro said we’re heading into the second half of the year in a fairly strong position.

file / URI

The days are getting shorter, our cobalt coastline is cooler. The rhythms of fall return. In our cozy corner of New England, a timeless harbinger of the season is students thronging college campuses.

Behind the teary parental goodbye hugs and lugging the laptops to the dorm looms an uneasiness in the realm of higher education these days. Students loaded down with mountains of debt graduate into an uncertain economy. ``Do you want fries with that diploma’’ is the gallows humor of our age.

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