The Coordinating Commission's academic programs officer, Kathleen Fimple, recently attended a national conference of higher-education leaders and took part in a panel discussion regarding new federal regulations on distance education. Fimple was one of three panelists for a breakout session titled "The New Federal Rules on Program Integrity: Shining the Spotlight on Distance Education," held Aug. 10 at the State Higher Education Executive Officers annual policy conference in San Francisco.
The session focused on new rules from the U.S. Department of Education that require postsecondary institutions participating in Title IV programs document compliance with laws in all states where they offer distance education. Fimple handles such compliance requests for Nebraska and has fielded hundreds of inquiries from institutions across the country.
Fimple has been with the Commission since 1993. Her duties include evaluating proposals for new academic programs and reviewing existing programs at Nebraska's 13 public institutions, evaluating applications from out-of-state institutions wanting to offer programs in Nebraska, administering a federal grant for improving teacher quality, and collecting and analyzing academic data for special reports.