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Zales Scholarships & Pendants at Black College Football Hall of Fame Classic

Zales supports HBCU students with scholarships & pendants at Black College Football Hall of Fame Classic.



Zales, the Diamond Store, has announced that it will award two academic scholarships to students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) during the 2023 Black College Football Hall of Fame Classic. The scholarships, valued at $5,000 each, will be presented to a student from each participating school, Morehouse College and Virginia Union University.

The scholarship recipients were chosen based on their academic achievements in retail/entrepreneurial-focused fields of study. The students will be recognized during the game’s festivities, emphasizing the importance of academic excellence alongside athletic achievement.

Zales, the official jeweler and sponsor of the Black College Football Hall of Fame (BCFHOF), is known for creating the iconic rings for BCFHOF inductees. This scholarship and sponsorship highlight the company’s ongoing collaboration with the Pro Football Hall of Fame (PFHOF) and its commitment to supporting HBCUs.

In addition to the scholarships, Zales will present commemorative pendants to each student-athlete participating in the Classic. These unique pendants, made of stainless steel and featuring the game’s logo and the player’s team name, symbolize their participation in this prestigious event celebrating HBCU football.

Zales’ involvement with the Black College Football Hall of Fame and HBCU students demonstrates their dedication to diversity and creating opportunities for talented individuals. By supporting deserving students and fostering relationships with HBCUs, Zales is investing in the future leaders of tomorrow.

For more information about Zales and their initiatives, visit their website at www.Zales.com. The Black College Football Hall of Fame, founded in 2009, honors the achievements of football players, coaches, and contributors from HBCUs. The Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, serves to preserve the history and celebrate the game’s excellence.

The Black College Football Hall of Fame was founded in 2009 by African-American pioneers, quarterbacks James Harris and Doug Williams to preserve the history and honor the greatest football players, coaches and contributors from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). There have been over 100 Inductees since inception, including Mel Blount, James Harris, Willie Lanier, Art Shell and Doug Williams, who serve as Trustees.
The Black College Football Hall of Fame is presented annually by The Shack Harris & Doug Williams Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit, tax-exempt organization.


Located in Canton, Ohio, the birthplace of the National Football League, the Pro Football Hall of Fame is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit institution with the Mission to Honor the Greatest of the Game, Preserve its History, Promote its Values, & Celebrate Excellence Together.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. AAM accreditation is national recognition for the museum’s commitment to excellence and the highest professional standards of museum operation and public service.

Hundreds of thousands of fans from across the globe travel to Canton annually to experience an inspirational, interactive museum that chronicles America’s most popular sport. Fans can also enjoy the Hall of Fame Store at the Hall, and online at www.profootballhof.com/store for merchandise from all 32 NFL clubs plus the Hall of Fame. Proceeds from the Store support the Hall’s Mission. Gridiron Glory Myrtle Beach gives fans another opportunity to experience “The Best of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.” For more information, go to https://www.hofmyrtlebeach.com/.

Construction on Hall of Fame Village, a mixed-use development project, is under way in Canton to transform the Hall of Fame’s campus.

SOURCE PRNewswire/ Zales

Rod is a blogger, writer, filmmaker, photographer, daydreamer who likes to cook. Rod produces and directs the web series, CUPIC: Diary of an Investigator. He is also the editor, producer and administrator of TNC Network. He is married to Rebecca Washington

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College Life

U.S. News Releases 2024 Best Colleges Rankings

Latest edition places an emphasis on outcomes measures for graduating college students.



WASHINGTON /PRNewswire/ — U.S. News & World Report, the global authority in education rankings, today announced the 2024 Best Colleges. Serving as a guide for prospective students and their families, the rankings evaluate 1,500 colleges and universities using up to 19 measures of academic quality. This year’s rankings placed a greater emphasis on social mobility and outcomes for graduating college students, demonstrating the most significant methodological change in the rankings’ history.

More than 50% of an institution’s rank now comprises varying outcome measures related to success in enrolling and graduating students from all backgrounds with manageable debt and post-graduate success. In addition, five factors were removed: class size, faculty with terminal degrees, alumni giving, high school class standing and the proportion of graduates who borrow federal loans.

“For 40 years, students and their families have come to count on Best Colleges as a vital resource as they navigate one of the most important decisions of their lives,” says Eric Gertler, executive chairman and CEO of U.S. News. “The significant changes in this year’s methodology are part of the ongoing evolution to make sure our rankings capture what is most important for students as they compare colleges and select the school that is right for them.”

With these outcomes-focused methodology adjustments, the following schools saw significant increases in their rank:

  • Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (NC) +106
  • University of Texas at San Antonio (TX) +92
  • California State University, East Bay +88
  • Florida Gulf Coast University +80
  • University of Texas Rio Grande Valley +72
  • Gwynedd Mercy University (PA) +71
  • University of Nevada, Reno +68
  • Northern Arizona University +68
  • The University of Texas at El Paso +68
  • California State University, Fresno +65
  • The University of Texas at Arlington +63
  • Northern Illinois University +62
  • Aurora University (IL) +62
  • Texas Woman’s University +62
  • San Francisco State University (CA) +56
  • Florida Atlantic University +54
  • Augusta University (GA) +52
  • University of Wisconsin–Oshkosh (WI) +52
  • Texas State University +51
  • University of Houston, Clear Lake +51

For the first time, Best Colleges includes undergraduate economics degree and psychology degree rankings. This edition of the rankings also includes specialized rankings, such as the most innovative colleges and universities with the greatest commitment to undergraduate teaching.

The 2024 Best Colleges methodology is calculated using 19 key measures of academic quality for National Universities and 13 indicators for the National Liberal Arts Colleges, Regional Universities and Regional Colleges. The formula uses data universally reported by schools or obtainable from third-party sources. As always, schools’ eligibility to be ranked is not contingent on participation in U.S. News’ surveys.

2024 Best National Universities – Top 3
1. Princeton University (NJ)
2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
3. Harvard University (MA) (tie)
3. Stanford University (CA) (tie)

2024 Best National Liberal Arts Colleges – Top 3
1. Williams College (MA)
2. Amherst College (MA)
3. United States Naval Academy (MD)


2024 Top Public Schools: National Universities – Top 3
1. University of California, Berkeley (tie)
1. University of California, Los Angeles (tie)
3. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

2024 Top Public Schools: National Liberal Arts Colleges – Top 3
1. United States Naval Academy (MD)
2. United States Air Force Academy (CO)
3. United States Military Academy at West Point (NY)

2024 Top Performers on Social Mobility: National Universities – Top 3
1. California State University, Long Beach
2. California State University, Fullerton (tie)
2. California State University, Riverside (tie)
4. California State University, San Bernardino (tie)
4. University of California, Merced (tie)

2024 Top Performers on Social Mobility: National Liberal Arts Colleges – Top 3
1. Lake Forest College (IL)
2. Agnes Scott College (GA) (tie)
2. Salem College (NC) (tie)
2. Spelman College (GA)

Alongside the rankings, U.S. News publishes editorial content related to the college selection experience. This includes advice on topics such as a complete guide to the application processhow to ask for letters of recommendationhow to apply to college for free and more.

On Sept. 28, U.S. News will host a free webinar on the new edition of Best Colleges and its methodology, with presentations from the lead ranking analysts. Those interested in attending can register here.

U.S. News’ education portfolio also includes the newly acquired CollegeAdvisor.com which offers expert support during the college admissions process. In addition, U.S. News College Compass provides students and their parents with access to the most complete rankings and data.


To order a copy of the “Best Colleges 2024” guidebook (ISBN 979-8-9864591-2-7), visit the online U.S. News store.

About U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report is the global leader in quality rankings that empower consumers, business leaders and policy officials to make better, more informed decisions about important issues affecting their lives and communities. A multifaceted digital media company with Education, Health, Money, Travel, Cars, News, Real Estate, Careers and 360 Reviews platforms, U.S. News provides rankings, independent reporting, data journalism, consumer advice and U.S. News Live events. More than 40 million people visit USNews.com each month for research and guidance. Founded in 1933, U.S. News is headquartered in Washington, D.C.

SOURCE U.S. News & World Report, L.P.

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College Life

Georgia Tech and Hyundai Announce Multi-Decade Partnership

The partnership will focus on sustainable mobility, hydrogen economy, and workforce development.
Hyundai is currently building a new $5.54 billion EV manufacturing plant in Georgia.
Athletics cooperation includes field-naming recognition at Bobby Dodd Stadium.



THE FLATS – Georgia Tech and Hyundai Motor Company today announced a multi-decade partnership as part of Hyundai’s investments in the state of Georgia. The vision for the partnership includes research and applications to support the future of sustainable mobility, hydrogen economy, workforce development, and smart cities, among many other areas of cooperation. More details will be announced in the coming months.   

Hyundai is investing $5.54 billion to develop the Hyundai Motor Group Metaplant America, a new dedicated electric vehicle and battery plant in Bryan County, Georgia, which will create more than 8,100 direct jobs. Hyundai created a $120,000 STEM scholarship at Georgia Tech when it broke ground on the site in October 2022.   

The partnership also includes field-naming recognition at Bobby Dodd Stadium, which will now be known as Bobby Dodd Stadium at Hyundai Field, and sponsorship elements that feature enhancements to boost the experience on gamedays for fans in and around the home of Georgia Tech football. 

“Like Georgia Tech, Hyundai is a global brand that is synonymous with quality, innovation, and a commitment to advancing technology to make a positive difference in the world. The more we have gotten to know each other, the more obvious the alignment of our values has become,” said Georgia Tech President Ángel Cabrera. “I am grateful for the transformative investments Hyundai is making in our state, and I am proud that the Hyundai brand will feature prominently on our campus. I look forward to working with Hyundai leaders to deepen our partnership as we work to develop exceptional leaders and produce new ideas that will shape the automotive industry and advance mobility in the future.” 

“Georgia Tech is known around the world for having some of the best and brightest graduates as well as a storied athletics program,” said José Muñoz, president and global COO of Hyundai Motor Company, and president and CEO of Hyundai and Genesis Motor North America. “Proximity to institutions like Georgia Tech was one of the many reasons Hyundai selected Georgia for our new EV manufacturing facility. We are thrilled to expand our relationship with Georgia Tech, which will include opportunities for student professional development and cooperative work programs in addition to athletic engagements.”  

“Georgia Tech Athletics is proud to partner with Hyundai as it invests in Georgia Tech and the state of Georgia. This partnership will be truly transformative for Georgia Tech Athletics, both now and for years to come,” said J Batt, director of Athletics, Georgia Tech. “I want to express our sincere appreciation to José Muñoz and his team for their genuine interest in aligning with Georgia Tech. We are thrilled to join forces with Hyundai and look forward to a long-lasting, mutually beneficial partnership.” 

The benefits of the partnership are wide-ranging and substantial for Georgia Tech and the state of Georgia. They include: 

  • A vital pathway for Georgia Tech to meet its stated goal of expanding its stature as a leading research entity in the electrification of the automotive industry through its world-class hydrogen research. 
  • An opportunity for Georgia Tech to more broadly contribute to the state of Georgia’s commitment as a hub for the production of electric vehicles. 
  • New revenue for Georgia Tech Athletics, which, within the ever-changing landscape of intercollegiate athletics, will be vital in providing student-athletes and teams with the resources needed to compete at the highest levels, both athletically and academically. The new revenue will also allow Georgia Tech Athletics to continue to provide Tech students, alumni, and fans with a world-class experience as supporters of the Yellow Jackets. 

Bobby Dodd Stadium at Hyundai Field is the oldest on-campus stadium in NCAA Division I’s Football Bowl Subdivision and one of the nation’s most unique and historic settings for college football. It opened in 1913 as Grant Field, then was renamed, in honor of legendary Georgia Tech Coach and Athletics Director Bobby Dodd, in 1988. The historic Grant Field name will continue to be memorialized with a display at the stadium. 

Legends, which has managed corporate partnerships and multimedia rights for Georgia Tech Athletics since 2021, helped facilitate the athletics partnership with Hyundai. 

Established in 1967, Hyundai Motor Company is present in over 200 countries with more than 120,000 employees dedicated to tackling real-world mobility challenges around the globe. Based on the brand vision ‘Progress for Humanity,’ Hyundai Motor Company is accelerating its transformation into a Smart Mobility Solution Provider. The company invests in advanced technologies such as robotics and Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) to bring about revolutionary mobility solutions, while pursuing open innovation to introduce future mobility services. In pursuit of a sustainable future for the world, Hyundai will continue its efforts to introduce zero emission vehicles equipped with industry-leading hydrogen fuel cell and EV technologies.  

With 400-plus student-athletes across 17 varsity sports, Georgia Tech competes at the highest level of intercollegiate athletics as a member of NCAA Division I and the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), while also developing young people who will change the world. Georgia Tech has long been a leader in innovation in college athletics with the NCAA CHAMPS/Life Skills Program (known as the Total Person Program at GT), commitments to athletics scholarships until student-athletes graduate, and the use of virtual reality in recruiting among the many concepts that originated on The Flats. The Yellow Jackets have won five national championships during their illustrious history (four in football – 1917, 1928, 1952, and 1990; one in women’s tennis – 2007) and appeared in two Final Fours in men’s basketball (1990 and 2004) and three College World Series in baseball (1994, 2002, and 2006). Combining world-class education with top-notch athletics, Georgia Tech has produced 90 Academic All-Americans. For more on Georgia Tech Athletics, visit ramblinwreck.com.   

Founded in 2008, Legends is a premium experiences company with six divisions operating worldwide — Global Planning, Global Sales, Hospitality, Global Partnerships, Global Merchandise, and Global Technology Solutions — offering clients and partners a 360-degree data-and-analytics-fueled service solution platform to elevate their brand and execute their vision. Currently, Legends works with marquee clients across business verticals including professional sports, collegiate, attractions, entertainment, conventions, and leisure. They are the industry leaders in designing, planning, and realizing exceptional experiences in sports and entertainment. For more information, visit Legends.net and follow Legends on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @TheLegendsWay. 

Source: Hyundai

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Artificial Intelligence

Researchers Find Little Evidence of Cheating with Online, Unsupervised Exams



Credit: Christopher Gannon/Iowa State University.
Students work on laptops above “Gene Pool,” a tile mosaic by Andrew Leicester inside the Molecular Biology Building at Iowa State University.
« Researchers Find Little Evidence of Cheating with Online, Unsupervised Exams

Newswise — AMES, IA — When Iowa State University switched from in-person to remote learning halfway through the spring semester of 2020, psychology professor Jason Chan was worried. Would unsupervised, online exams unleash rampant cheating?

His initial reaction flipped to surprise as test results rolled in. Individual student scores were slightly higher but consistent with their results from in-person, proctored exams. Those receiving B’s before the COVID-19 lockdown were still pulling in B’s when the tests were online and unsupervised. This pattern held true for students up and down the grading scale.

“The fact that the student rankings stayed mostly the same regardless of whether they were taking in-person or online exams indicated that cheating was either not prevalent or that it was ineffective at significantly boosting scores,” says Chan.

To know if this was happening at a broader level, Chan and Dahwi Ahn, a Ph.D. candidate in psychology, analyzed test score data from nearly 2,000 students across 18 classes during the spring 2020 semester. Their sample ranged from large, lecture-style courses with high enrollment, like introduction to statistics, to advanced courses in engineering and veterinary medicine.

Across different academic disciplines, class sizes, course levels and test styles (i.e., predominantly multiple choice or short answer), the researchers found the same results. Unsupervised, online exams produced scores very similar to in-person, proctored exams, indicating they can provide a valid and reliable assessment of student learning.

The research findings were recently published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“Before conducting this research, I had doubts about online and unproctored exams, and I was quite hesitant to use them if there was an option to have them in-person. But after seeing the data, I feel more confident and hope other instructors will, as well,” says Ahn.

Both researchers say they’ve continued to give exams online, even for in-person classes. Chan says this format provides more flexibility for students who have part-time jobs or travel for sports and extra-curriculars. It also expands options for teaching remote classes. Ahn led her first  online course over the summer.


Why might cheating have had a minimal effect on test scores?

The researchers say students more likely to cheat might be underperforming in the class and anxious about failing. Perhaps they’ve skipped lectures, fallen behind with studying or feel uncomfortable asking for help. Even with the option of searching Google during an unmonitored exam, students may struggle to find the correct answer if they don’t understand the content. In their paper, the researchers point to evidence from previous studies comparing test scores from open-book and close-book exams.

Another factor that may deter cheating is academic integrity or a sense of fairness, something many students value, says Chan. Those who have studied hard and take pride in their grades may be more inclined to protect their exam answers from students they view as freeloaders.

Still, the researchers say instructors should be aware of potential weak spots with unsupervised, online exams. For example, some platforms have the option of showing students the correct answer immediately after they select a multiple-choice option. This makes it much easier for students to share answers in a group text.

To counter this and other forms of cheating, instructors can:

  • Wait to release exam answers until the test window closes.
  • Use larger, randomized question banks.
  • Add more options in multiple-choice questions and making the right choice less obvious.
  • Adjust grade cutoffs.

COVID-19 and ChatGPT

Chan and Ahn say the spring 2020 semester provided a unique opportunity to research the validity of online exams for student evaluations. However, there were some limitations. For example, it wasn’t clear what role stress and other COVID-19-related impacts may have played on students, faculty and teaching assistants. Perhaps instructors were more lenient with grading or gave longer windows of time to complete exams.

The researchers said another limitation was not knowing if the 18 classes in the sample normally get easier or harder as the semester progresses. In an ideal experiment, half of the students would have taken online exams for the first half of the semester and in-person exams for the second half.

They attempted to account for these two concerns by looking at older test score data from a subset of the 18 classes during semesters when they were fully in-person. The researchers found the distribution of grades in each class was consistent with the spring 2020 semester and concluded that the materials covered in the first and second halves of the semester did not differ in their difficulty.

At the time of data collection for this study, ChatGPT wasn’t available to students. But the researchers acknowledge AI writing tools are a gamechanger in education and could make it much harder for instructors to evaluate their students. Understanding how instructors should approach online exams with the advent of ChatGPT is something Ahn intends to research.


The study was supported by a National Science Foundation Science of Learning and Augmented Intelligence Grant.

Journal Link: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Source: Iowa State University

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