Notes in the Margins: Pot, Brits abroad and Facebook in admissions

Pulling the plug — A perfect storm is brewing that could change higher education Nevada is considering closing down five of its nine higher education institutions because of budget shortfalls this legislative term. And in California, at least three universities are considering going private because of the state’s lack of funding. In Connecticut, Montana and South Dakota, college students have already staged or are planning on staging protests over proposed higher education cuts. (Deseret News)

Synthetic marijuana widely used at Naval Academy, some midshipmen say A synthetic form of marijuana is widely used at the U.S. Naval Academy because it cannot be detected in routine drug tests, according to several former midshipmen who have been removed from campus for using or possessing the substance. (Washington Post)

Pa. Catholic college fires gay part-time professor A Catholic college in Philadelphia says it has fired a part-time professor after learning from a post on his blog that he has been in a same-sex relationship for a decade and a half, which officials called contrary to church teaching. (Associated Press via Washington Post)

British Educators Telling Students: Go Abroad One effect of rising university fees in England and the falling percentage of applicants offered places is that students are being urged to go abroad — to save money while enhancing the quality of their education. (New York Times)

80% Of College Admissions Officers Use Facebook To Check Out Students Although this doesn’t necessarily mean that Facebook and other online profiles will be considered in making admissions decisions, All Facebook reports that at least one Harvard admissions officer — who posted on a Quora thread in response to the question “do high school students’ Facebook profiles affect their college applications?” — said that a student’s online presence “absolutely” prejudices her. (The Huffington Post)