Rhode Island College

Lila Sapinsley,  former state senator from Providence’s East Side and patron of arts, education  and good government causes, has died at her Laurelmead home in Providence. She was 92.

A liberal Republican, Sapinsley rose to become the first woman  Senate Minority Leader and was nearly elected lieutenant governor in 1984, an election she narrowly lost to Democrat Richard Licht.


Rhode Island College President Nancy Carriuolo is among more than a hundred college presidents at the White House Thursday for President Barack Obama's Summit on College Opportunity.

Carriuolo will be joined by Providence Public Schools Superintendent Susan Lusi.

Providence is one of more than 50 cities that have joined an effort to increase the number of residents with college or other post-secondary degrees.

The full Board of Education votes Monday on tuition increases for students at the university of Rhode Island, Rhode Island college and the state's community college system.  State higher education officials call it a modest increase.  They say it is necessary after two years with no increases at URI, and three years with no increase at CCRI.  

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Students at Rhode Island public colleges and universities could see tuition increases next year. 

The Board of Education’s Council on Higher Education has approved a budget with a nearly 3 percent increase at the University of Rhode Island and roughly 8 percent increases at Rhode Island College and the Community College of Rhode Island. 

Higher Education commissioner Jim Purcell said the increases come as state colleges have seen a 23 percent reduction in state funding over the last 5 years. 

Courtesy of Rhode Island College

Rhode Island College is on a mission to improve the state’s declining honeybee population. Honeybees are responsible for one out of every three bites of food we eat. They pollinate nuts, fruits, and vegetables. The honeybee population has declined dramatically nationwide by more than 50 percent over the last 75 years.

Elisabeth Harrison

Rhode Island is home to one of the nation’s largest Liberian populations, and many Liberian immigrants are students in the state's public schools and universities.

As the Ebola epidemic rages on in her home country, Rhode Island Public Radio education reporter Elisabeth Harrison sat down with Rhode Island College student Charline Early to find out how it has changed life for her and her family.

After cancelling a trip several weeks ago, Rhode Island College will finally get a visit from President Barack Obama. The president is expected to discuss women in the workplace and the economy.

He is likely to tout new data showing an increase in Gross Domestic Product, which is seen by many analysts as an encouraging sign of growth in the U.S.

RIC officials say classes will go forward as scheduled, although some locations had to be changed to accommodate security for the president.

John Bender / RIPR

When he visits Rhode Island Friday, President Barack Obama will speak about the improving national economy and the latest Gross Domestic Product data that was released today by the federal government.

Obama is scheduled to arrive at Green State Airport  this evening and stay overnight in Providence. While the White House is not disclosing where the president will stay, sources in Providence say it will be the Omni Hotel downtown, which is attached to the Rhode Island Convention Center.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

President Obama has endorsed Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gina Raimondo.  

Raimondo’s campaign detailed the president’s support in a statement.  President Obama says Raimondo has the business experience to create jobs, and the ability to bring people together to solve tough problems.  The president was slated to appear at Rhode Island College Thursday, but canceled to focus on the ongoing Ebola crisis.

Meanwhile, former presidential candidate Mitt Romney is due to visit Providence Thursday to campaign for Raimondo’s Republican opponent, Allan Fung.

President Barack Obama’s campaign trip to Rhode Island Thursday has been canceled due to the Ebola situation, the White House announced a few minutes ago.

The statement issued to the press states that the president’s scheduled travel to R.I. and New York has been cancelled. ``The president will remain at the White House to follow –up on the government’s Ebola response,’’ said the White House statement.

More details will be released tomorrow morning.

President Obama may not as popular as he once was, according to the latest public opinion polls. Yet  if you were on the Rhode Island College campus his afternoon, you wouldn’t hold that view.

By 3:30 p.m., more than 500 students and many others who appeared much older than the traditional college-age students, were lined up to get tickets for Obama’s speech at 3 p.m. on Thursday. RIC political science professor Kay Israel said that interest has been high among students and faculty for the presidential visit.

Rhode Island College

Rhode Island College has released new details on President Barack Obama's visit to The Ocean State on Thursday.

RIC says the president is scheduled to speak at 3 p.m. at the Murray Center on the college's Providence campus. The address is expected to focus on the economy.

Tickets for the event will be available this morning for RIC students and faculty, starting at 11 a.m., according to the college's website.

Courtesy Rhode Island College

Rhode Island College holds a ribbon cutting ceremony today for Alex and Ani Hall. The $17 million renovation project created the university’s first-ever arts building.  

The 1958 building originally housed a student center, cafeteria, and library.  RIC President Nancy Carriuolo says the renovated building has plenty of natural light and a special ventilation system to make sure the studios are safe for art making.


Is Rhode Island government finally waking up to leveraging state colleges as wellsprings of economic development? RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay sees some hopeful signs on Smith Hill.

After years of malign neglect of Rhode Island’s public colleges and universities, the General Assembly finally appears to be turning a corner. Several elements in the state budget approved last week by the House Finance Committee show that Statehouse politicians are finally getting the message on the iron link between education and creating jobs in the Ocean State.

After too many years of giving short shrift to public higher education in Rhode Island,  the General Assembly and state government appear to have finally begun to reverse this short-sighted policy.

In the budget that cleared the House Finance Committee on a 14 to 2 vote Thursday, the University of Rhode Island, Rhode Island College and the Community College of Rhode Island have won some important initiatives.