Bloomberg Philanthropies Targets Economic Diversity in Higher Ed: The American Talent Initiative will initially partner with 30 public and private universities on efforts to enroll more low- and moderate-income students, writes The New York Times. Michael Bloomberg's foundation has committed $1.7 million to launch the project, according to The News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C.
Thiel Fellowship Evolves Into Elite Entrepreneur Corps: A Backchannel feature examines the state of billionaire tech investor Peter Thiel's six-year-old program, which offers $100,000 grants to college students who drop out to pursue innovative tech businesses, and the pedigree and networking bonanza the fellowship confers on budding entrepreneurs. Read a Chronicle column about the Thiel Foundation's fellowship program.
How Betsy Devos Pushed Back Against Charter-School Regulation: The billionaire philanthropist and conservative activist tapped to be secretary of education has wielded her financial and political clout to fight oversight of charters in her home state of Michigan, according to The New York Times. Read a Chronicle column on how Ms. Devos and other mega-donors have sought to influence education policy.
Billions at Stake for Faith Nonprofits in High Court Pensions Case: The Atlantic examines the financial ramifications for religiously affiliated hospitals, schools, and other institutions of the Supreme Court's recent decision to hear a case over whether such nonprofits are subject to federal regulations aimed at safeguarding employees' retirement funds.
Indiana U. Med School Gets $30 Million for Immunotherapy Research: The gift will establish the Donald Brown Center for Immunotherapy at the university to develop disease treatments based on the patient's immune system, reports the Indianapolis Star. Dr. Brown, a 1985 graduate of the medical school, founded tech company Interactive Intelligence.
Ex-Pa. Congressman Sentenced to 10 Years in Charity-Linked Corruption Case: Chaka Fattah, a Philadelphia Democrat who served 11 terms in the House, was found guilty in June of using hundreds of thousands of dollars from an education nonprofit he founded to help repay an illegal campaign loan, the Associated Press writes.