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16 SEP 2021
1. Multiple 2022 US university rankings have been released this month, and the same handful of schools dominate top places
Since the beginning of September, annual university rankings have been released for 2022 by US News, Times Higher Education and Forbes — all of which serve as reference points for students around the world beginning the college application process. US News and Forbes both rank US universities only, with the Ivy League, Stanford and MIT all populating their highest rankings. THE’s rankings are global, though their top 10 places look quite similar to their US-only counterparts, with the addition of Oxford and Cambridge. All three organizations base their university rankings on a range of criteria including academic performance and reputation, graduate outcomes, and available financial resources.
Crimson’s Take: University rankings offer valuable insights into what makes top schools so competitive, with helpful information about their academics, student life, tuition fees and more. Oftentimes, this helps prospective students (and their families) understand their own priorities when deciding where to apply! However, while these rankings provide a lot of helpful information, they don’t cover all you need to know to find your best-fit university; which is why at Crimson, we prioritize helping our students build their perfect school list based on a variety of important factors. Rankings are a starting point — but they are not everything!
2. US President Biden’s latest administrative actions could drastically increase vaccination rates at US universities
President Biden this week announced that new regulations are being developed that will oblige all private businesses with over 100 employees to require staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or be tested for the virus weekly. He also signed an executive order requiring all government-affiliated employees to be vaccinated. Together, these directives could generate a jump in vaccination rates in the US higher education sphere as the large majority of private universities have more than 100 employees, and many public institutions contract with the US government, such as those who manage federal research labs.
Crimson’s Take: We’ve always supported vaccine mandates on college campuses, which last year proved to be hotspots for COVID outbreaks. While we do understand that vaccine requirements are a sensitive subject that has sparked controversy in the US for months, we also recognize that the fastest way back to a post-pandemic world, especially at colleges and universities, is through vaccination. As a company dedicated to helping students all over the world pursue an education from their dream university, we advocate for the safe return to in-person living and learning for students whose college experience has been harshly compromised in the last 18 months due to the pandemic.
3. Harvard announces it will officially stop investing in fossil fuels and will shifts its $42 billion endowment towards investing in a green economy
In April, the student body presidents at all 8 Ivy League universities signed a joint resolution calling for the institutions’ complete fossil fuel divestment by 2025. This week, Harvard became the first Ivy to formally announce its commitment to stop investing in fossil fuels in response to “the need to decarbonize the economy [and] make long-term investment decisions that support our teaching and research mission.” The Harvard Management Company, which manages the uni’s $42 billion endowment, noted it is now working on “building a portfolio of investments in funds that support the transition to a green economy.”
Crimson’s Take: At Crimson, we acknowledge the very real threat posed against future generations by the climate crisis and know that one of the best ways to combat this threat is to decrease our dependence on fossil fuels globally. We admire Harvard’s public commitment to divesting from fossil fuels and instead invest in environmental sustainability, especially with the knowledge that Harvard is the richest university in the US and has a high degree of influence on the world stage as a leader in higher education. We hope this will be the first of many similar commitments from other universities in the fight against climate change.