Media Coverage of the University of Michigan — September 2014

Why federal college ratings won’t rein in tuition
(New York Times, Sept. 20, 2014)
“College costs have been rising for decades. Slowing — or even better, reversing — that trend would get more people into college and help reduce student debt. The Obama administration is working on an ambitious plan intended to rein in college costs, and it deserves credit for tackling this tough job. Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s going to work,” writes Susan Dynarski, a professor of economics, education, and public policy at U-M. She has advised the Obama administration on the findings of her student-aid policy research. More

What happens when we all live to 100?
(The Atlantic, Sept. 17, 2014)
If life-expectancy trends continue, society is bound to transform in surprising and far-reaching ways. The University of Michigan, the University of Texas, and the University of California at San Francisco are studying ways to slow aging, as is the Mayo Clinic. Late in 2013, Google brought its trove of cash into the game, founding a spin-off called the California Life Company (known as Calico) to specialize in longevity research. Six months after Calico’s charter was announced, Craig Venter, the biotech entrepreneur who in the 1990s conducted a dramatic race against government laboratories to sequence the human genome, also founded a start-up that seeks ways to slow aging. More

U-M tops U.S. public universities in global ranking
(The Detroit News, September 16, 2014)
The University of Michigan is the nation’s top public university for the second straight year, according to the QS World University Rankings. U-M is 23rd among global institutions in the 2014 rankings, one spot lower than in 2013. The top school is the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; the top U.S. university is Harvard, at No. 4. More

Mad men: How to change the tide of domestic violence
(The Detroit Free Press, September 14, 2014)
One out of every five men . . . That’s how many men in America admitted to pushing, slapping, hitting, choking, or committing some other form of physical violence against his intimate partner. That’s a lot of batterers, and they all are not professional athletes like Ray Rice, says the author of a new study, Dr. Vijay Singh, a lecturer and teacher at the University of Michigan Medical School. More

Toxic algae cocktail brews in Lake Erie
(Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, September 13, 2014)
Lake Erie is sick again. Modern farming practices, wetter springs, and toxic-algae-spitting invasive mussels have conspired to produce late-summer poisonous blooms that can sprawl across nearly 2,000 square miles, threatening anew everything from beach-goers to public drinking water supplies. The lake’s famed fishery is also at stake — when the toxic green blobs die and decompose, they foster oxygen-depleted “dead zones” approaching the size of those that led to Erie’s obituaries in the 1970s. And the scariest thing about it all: State and federal regulators have yet to take the first step toward controlling the problem by invoking the Clean Water Act and declaring the ailing lake “impaired.” More

Baby steps toward driverless cars deliver huge leaps in safety
(Forbes, September 11, 2014)
If cars are going to drive themselves someday, they’ll need to master the art of talking to each other and to their environment. Based on the technologies on display at the recent Intelligent Transportation Systems World Congress in Detroit, we’re getting tantalizingly close to that Jetsons era. But let’s not get carried away; the industry still has a lot of work to do before fully autonomous cars are ready. More

Study: More breast cancer patients should keep their healthy breasts
(Los Angeles Times, September 3, 2014)
Data on 189,734 breast cancer patients from California show that the 10-year survival rate for women who had both breasts removed was 81.2 percent, according to a recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Assn. That was statistically indistinguishable from the 83.2 percent 10-year survival rate for women who had breast-conserving surgery and radiation. (Both groups fared better than women who opted for a single mastectomy; their 10-year survival rate 79.9 percent.) In a commentary published alongside the JAMA study, U-M’s Dr. Lisa Newman said the study should empower doctors to steer their patients away from unnecessary mastectomies. More


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