Karen Gross Society Guru

Karen is #6 LinkedIn Global Top Voice 2018 - Education. She was also an Education Top Voice in 2015, 2016 and 2017. She is an educator and an author. Prior to becoming a college president, she was a tenured law professor for two plus decades. Her academic areas of expertise include trauma, toxic stress, consumer finance, overindebtedness and asset building in low income communities. She currently serves as Senior Counsel at Finn Partners Company. From 2011 to 2013, She served (part and full time) as Senior Policy Advisor to the US Department of Education in Washington, DC. She was the Department's representative on the interagency task force charged with redesigning the transition assistance program for returning service members and their families. From 2006 to 2014, she was President of Southern Vermont College, a small, private, affordable, four-year college located in Bennington, VT. In Spring 2016, she was a visiting faculty member at Bennington College in VT. She also teaches part-time st Molly Stark Elementary School, also in Vt. She is also an Affiliate of the Penn Center for MSIs. She is the author of adult and children’s books, the most recent of which are titled Breakaway Learners (adult) and  Lucy’s Dragon Quest. Karen holds a bachelor degree in English and Spanish from Smith College and Juris Doctor degree (JD) in Law from Temple University - James E. Beasley School of Law.


Cutting Mental Health Service on Campuses

A recent article in Inside Higher Education addressed this reality: the largest community college in the Pennsylvania State system is cutting mental health services. In this particular community college on a go forward basis, these services are being handled by the community to which students are directed (how they are directed remains a mystery to me). And, when you look at the reasons: budget, budget, budget. I’d add lack of utilization and lack of an outcry. And, a lack of understanding of who are students are and our responsibility to them.


How Many Senses Do We Have?

I know we all focus on the usual five senses: seeing, hearing, touching, tasting and smelling. I spend lots of my time in environments where trauma has occurred or is present: the location of shootings, natural disaster sites, immigrant support centers, an Indian Reservation, inner cities, military bases and military schools, organizations serving troubled youth, and educational institutions.


Happy Labor Day

Happy Labor Day, recognising that for many, this is not a holiday but a work day. Best wishes for you and yours on Labor Day when we honour all workers.


Should You Pay More If You Are Marginal ?

There was a recent article about a veterinary school in Canada that wanted to charge higher tuition to those prospective students who were initially rejected and then accepted. The “newly accepted” students would be charged five times (no typo) the standard tuition free. It was anticipated that there would be five such “accepted” rejects.


Can We Speak Empathy in a Foreign Language ?

There just saw an email from David Remnick about The New Yorker’s new collected articles on languages — those we use, learn and speak that are not our own birth language. They appear under the rubric: In another tongue, clever.