William and Mary Digest: June 7

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College performs well in affordability measure

In its College Annual Index, the New York Times named William and Mary among the best schools in the country at providing financial aid for students who hail from low- and middle-income families.

The index named W&M as the first among all Virginia institutions of higher education. The college finished 56th overall. The University of Virginia (87th overall), Virginia Tech (100) and James Madison (101) also made the list.

Metrics for the list included the percentage of a school's graduates who used a Pell grant, the net price that low-income and middle-income students pay, and an average of the portion of its endowment a school uses for each student.

"It is gratifying to be recognized for the commitment William and Mary has made to making the university more affordable for Virginia's low- and middle-income families," said provost Michael Halleran. "We've seen real progress thanks to the investment in need-based aid for in-state students made possible through the William and Mary Promise.

Science professor honored

A research professor at the college has been honored for his long, storied NASA career alongside three women who served as the inspiration for the popular movie "Hidden Figures."

On June 1, Joel Levine was inducted into the Langley Research Center Hall of Honor Class of 2017. Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson also entered the Hall.

"I am truly humbled and honored to be included among the 37 researchers in the NACA/NASA Langley Hall of Honor on this, the centennial anniversary of this historic aeronautics and space research center," Levine said.

Levine joined the college's faculty in 2011 after 41 years with the organization.

Oyster market in good shape, report says

People in the Marine Advisory Services program have finished a study of the state's oyster production and sales, and Virginia's market is remains profitable.

"The story this year is that everything looks good. The markets remain strong and prices are up. There is no sign of market saturation with Virginia products," said Karen Hudson, the author of Virginia Shellfish Aquaculture Situation and Outlook Report, published by William and Mary's Virginia Institute of Marine Science.

Hudson's report is predicated on an industry-wide survey from the first quarter of 2017. Planters reported a decrease in the amount of the single oysters planted, but aren't concerned yet.

"We're more interested in long-term trends. We would only be concerned if we saw that decline continue over the next five years — and nothing in this report suggests that we are on anything other than a good track."

This was created with information from William and Mary's news department.

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