MHEC News September 2022

MHEC News summarizes key policy and research, convenings, programs, contracts, articles of interest, and updates for members of the Midwestern Higher Education Compact. We welcome your feedback and suggestions.



Tradeoffs of Funding Approaches for Public Colleges and Universities Subject of New Report

A new publication examining tradeoffs of funding approaches for public colleges and universities is now available in the college affordability and finance series, State Funding Approaches for Public Colleges and Universities in the Midwest. The report details how Midwestern states provide operating revenue for public postsecondary institutions; provides an overview of some possible tradeoffs inherent in specific funding approaches; and summarizes research on the effects of different funding mechanisms.

Key Findings

  • Funding approaches come with some distinct tradeoffs that can affect funding volatility, equity, and state higher education goals.
  • A summary of outcomes research provided evidence that some funding models may be more effective than others.
  • In FY21, every two-year system in the Midwest was funded based on a state formula, but some four-year systems did not use a formula. States differ in terms of whether funding formulas are based on student enrollment, performance, and/or a percentage change from the prior year’s funding level.
  • The most common metrics used in performance-based funding models in the region were progression toward a credential and the number of credentials awarded. Several states with performance-based funding models also used equity metrics to encourage college completion by underrepresented groups such as students from lower-income families, students of color, and adult learners.
  • The report concludes with a set of policy options to evaluate and improve state funding approaches, such as designing formulas to increase educational attainment, promote operational efficiencies, and support students who have been historically underserved in higher education.

This report is available at



WEBINAR: Elevate Vets: Advocacy and Support for Supporting Military-Connected Students

September 22, 2022
1:00 p.m. CT

Join us for our upcoming webinar Elevate Vets: Advocacy and Support for Campuses Supporting Military-Connected Students. Guest presenters from Veterans Education Success - Will Hubbard, vice president for veterans and military policy, and Barmak Nassirian, vice president for higher education policy, will discuss their free professional development resource that provides easy access to regulatory, administrative, and compliance information for campus officials serving veterans. Joshua Rider, executive director for Kent State University's Center for Adult and Veteran Services and chair of the Elevate Vets Advisory Board, will also present. Questions about MHEC's work with military-connected students may be directed to Sara Appel, MHEC associate director for policy initiatives.

WEBINAR: Unlocking the Potential of Educational Resources: Creative Commons Certification

October 4, 2022
1:00 p.m. CT

Join us for our upcoming webinar Unlocking the Potential of Educational Resources: Creative Commons Certification. Jennryn Wetzler of Creative Commons will provide an overview of its CC Certificate program, which offers in-depth courses about CC licenses, copyright, and open practices for their global, shared digital commons. Alumna Andrea Bearman of TrineOnline will share her experience in completing the CC Certificate. MHEC's contract with Creative Commons offers a 15% discount through June 2023 to staff and institutional members of MHEC and its sister compacts for existing and custom CC licensing for professional learning opportunities. Creative Commons is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to helping build and sustain a thriving commons of shared knowledge and culture. Through workshops, consultations and the Creative Commons Certificate, community members develop open licensing expertise and a deeper understanding of recommended practices for sharing.

HYBRID MEETING (ROSEMONT, IL): Achievements and Continued Challenges to Reducing Barriers in Credential Transparency
October 10-11, 2022

MHEC and Credential Engine look forward to hosting a hybrid convening of the Midwest Credential Transparency Alliance (MCTA) on October 10-11 to review accomplishments over the past 18 months and collaborate on an agenda for a regional approach to advancing credential transparency. Attendees will network and work together on solutions for reducing barriers to information and increasing equitable access to the full range of learning, advancement, and meaningful career opportunities in the region. Travel grants are available for this convening. If you would like to stay informed, please indicate your interest by signing up for the MCTA list. View the MCTA’s webpage for background on the initiative and materials from prior meetings.

IN-PERSON MEETING (DENVER, CO): MHEC's Technologies Community Welcomes Midwest Campus Representatives to Networking Breakfast at EDUCAUSE
October 26, 2022 6:45 a.m. MT

MHEC’s Technologies Community will host a breakfast on October 26 at the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference in Denver. Attendees from institutions across the Midwest region are invited to kick off their EDUCAUSE experience with this regional networking session. Attendees do not have to be current participants of MHEC’s Technologies Community. Learn more about MHEC’s Technologies Community and the associated technology contract portfolio. For more information contact Deb Kidwell, director of technology initiatives. Along with Ms. Kidwell, Susan Heegaard, president, and Nathan Sorensen, director of government contracts, look forward to connecting with attendees.


Appreciation for Service
Tim Goodwin
Term Completion September 2022

South Dakota
Janelle Toman
Retired April 2022
Editor's note, Dr. Toman was inadvertently left off of our recent acknowledgments of commissioner service.

MHEC Seeks Award Nominations

MHEC is seeking nominations for its two highest awards: the Phillip Sirotkin Award and the Outstanding Service Award. More information about each award and its criteria, past recipients, and nomination forms are posted on the MHEC website. MHEC's Governance Committee will review the nominations and forward recommendations on to the full commission for a vote. Please contact Mary Roberson, MHEC senior director of communications and marketing, if you have any questions. Award recipients will be announced during MHEC's Annual Commission Meeting November 14-16. Nominations are due by Friday, September 23.


MHEC Director Leaving for New Role with NC-SARA

Emily Jacobson, MHEC's current director of M-SARA, will become the new director of student and institution support for NC-SARA beginning October 3. In her new position she will provide strategic input and direction into policy considerations and stakeholder engagement as the primary NC-SARA liaison to SARA-participating institutions. She will continue to have a state support role and be engaged with her compact colleagues and SARA state portal entities nationally. Her last day at MHEC is September 21.

Susan Heegaard, president, will attend the Lumina Foundation's State Policy Retreat on September 28-30. This year's agenda is Better Together: Increasing Participation, Success, and Employment Alignment.

Sara Appel, associate director for policy initiatives, participated on the Credit for Prior Learning Shared Solutions Workgroup  which was convened by Advance CTE and Education Strategy Group (ESG). The workgroup engaged with the existing body of research and tools on credit for prior learning to guide an approach to designing this Policy Benchmark Tool. In addition to other documents cited, MHEC's resource Military Transcript and Experience Review: A 13-State Scan of Policies was instrumental in the design of the tool.

Jennifer Dahlquist, vice president, attended the University Risk Management and Insurance Association
[(URMIA) 53rd Annual Conference: Race for Risk Management on September 10-14.

Leah Reinert, policy and research manager, attended the NC-SARA's State Portal Entity Annual Conference on September 11-14.


New Grant Opportunity Available: Building Evidence to Increase Rural Learner Success
Ascendium | September 8, 2022

The Great Student Swap
Brookings | September 7, 2022

Ensuring Equitable Access to AR/VR in Higher Education
Brookings | September 6, 2022

Biden-Harris Administration Announces Final Student Loan Pause Extension Through December 31 and Targeted Debt Cancellation to Smooth Transition to Repayment
U.S. Department of Education | August 24, 2022

In Chicago and Other Urban Districts, A New Embrace of Career and Technical Programs
Chalkbeat | August 19, 2022

SHEEO Report: Fiscal Year 2021 SHEEO Membership Report
SHEEO | August 2022

The Funding Formula Review Process: Guidance and Best Practices
SHEEO | August 2022

SHEF 2021 Issue Brief: State Capital Appropriations for Public Higher Education Fiscal Years 2020 and 2021
SHEEO | August 2022

Embedding Credit for Prior Learning in Career Pathways
Advance CTE | July 2022

50-State Comparison: Dual/Concurrent Enrollment Policies
Education Commission of the States | June 21, 2022