Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Crunch Time for Calbright - Madeline St. Amour, Inside Higher Ed

California's new online-only community college grabbed headlines again with its CEO's departure. Some observers are raising red flags after the unexpected departure of the president and CEO of California’s new online-only community college. But others chalk it up to the normal growing pains associated with a start-up and say it’s too soon to judge whether the college will be successful.

Mills College's plan to sell artifacts revives ethics debate - Jeremy Bauer-Wolf, Education Dive

Now once again, Mills' operations have come under scrutiny as it looks to use an unorthodox method to fill financial gaps: selling off two valuable items from its library collection. These are the leaves from the First Folio of William Shakespeare's plays and a musical manuscript, which news reports have identified as a handwritten score by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. The sales would "support Mills' current programs and people while we build a bridge to a sustainable future," Elizabeth Hillman, Mills' president, wrote to the campus in a December letter announcing the college's intentions and also plugging the MillsNext plan.

Monday, January 20, 2020

As enrollment declines loom, one liberal arts college is banking on free tuition - Natalie Schwartz, Education Dive

In early December, one small liberal arts school in Kentucky bet big on a new scholarship. Georgetown College, a nearly 200-year-old Christian institution, promised four years of free undergraduate tuition to students from several nearby counties if they enrolled full time and lived on campus. William Jones, president of Georgetown, informed an auditorium of high school students from Franklin County about the program, called the Legacy and Legends Scholarship, at a livestreamed event later that month.

Many Nonprofit College Programs Would Fail Gainful Test - Kery Murakami, Inside Higher Ed

Only about 60 percent of programs at private nonprofit institutions, and 70 percent of those at public colleges and universities, would pass the Obama administration’s gainful-employment test, if it were in place and applied to them, according to an online tool developed by a conservative Texas policy group. Coming amid a stalemate over how to proceed with college accountability after Education Secretary Betsy DeVos repealed the gainful-employment rule in July, the tool made public by the Texas Public Policy Foundation was aimed in part to further the idea that public and nonprofit institutions -- and not just for-profit colleges -- should face scrutiny for how well graduates do financially.

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Clark College faculty begins strike after negotiations fail - KATU News

Classes at Clark College have been canceled indefinitely, as faculty members hit the picket lines Monday for the school’s first ever strike. “We need a contract that’s fair for all,” faculty sang as they stood on the picket lines. The college said it is committed to resolving negotiations and getting its students back in class, but it is struggling to find money in the budget.

Open Mike: President outlines a tale of two universities - Michael H. Schill, University of Oregon

So, which is it? Is the UO a financially challenged school that struggles to balance the budget, keep tuition low, offer fair compensation to our employees, and provide strong student support services? Or, are we a school with sufficient resources to construct new buildings, hire more professors, and invest in new, cutting edge research and teaching programs? The answer is that we are both.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Mills College's plan to sell artifacts revives ethics debate - Jeremy Bauer-Wolf, Education Dive

In May 2017, Mills College declared a "financial emergency" after years of enrollment declines and general budget woes slid the the Oakland, California-based women's college into a $9 million deficit. Administrators ended up laying off five tenured professors, a move usually reserved for the most financially precarious situations. Now once again, Mills' operations have come under scrutiny as it looks to use an unorthodox method to fill financial gaps: selling off two valuable items from its library collection. These are the leaves from the First Folio of William Shakespeare's plays and a musical manuscript, which news reports have identified as a handwritten score by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.


Boise State freezes tuition following 2020 budget cuts - CELINA VAN HYNING, the Arbiter

Many Idaho students and families are paying more of the costs to operate these higher education institutions than in previous years, according to Critchfield. This results in a rapid tuition increase during each fiscal year. “Forty years ago, state funding covered 88% and tuition revenue paid seven percent of that cost,” Critchfield wrote. “Today, the numbers are nearly even. State funding covers 51% of costs and tuition revenue pays 47%.”

Friday, January 17, 2020

Declining enrollment will factor into DePaul’s 2020-21 budget Bianca Cseke, DePaulia

Since a peak in 2010, DePaul’s population has declined by 3,334 students, according to a PowerPoint presentation by the provost and vice president of the university on Sept. 20. Although enrollment in higher education nationally is declining at about 4 percent, Illinois is seeing a decline of nearly 17 percent. DePaul has seen a roughly 12 percent decline since 2011, Bethke said during a town hall meeting in September.

As enrollment and revenues at S.D. universities fall, worries rise over possible program and personnel cuts LOCAL NEWS - Nick Lowrey, South Dakota News Watch

Total enrollment is on a steady decline in the public university system in South Dakota, forcing higher education officials to seek new sources of revenue, realign infrastructure and potentially cut programs or faculty positions. At South Dakota State University in Brookings — the state school with the highest enrollment — an unexpected 4% decline in enrollment in the fall of 2019 caused university officials to begin working on a plan likely to include cutting faculty positions. The SDSU Faculty Senate has been discussing the issue for months, said David Clay, the organization’s president.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Through job cuts and enrollment push, SUNO hopes to fix budget - DELLA HASSELLE, NOLA

Southern University at New Orleans officials said Friday they have made several staffing cuts and accepted a significant number of resignations while they finalize a plan to shore up the school's troubled finances as it attempts to get released from a second consecutive year of probation issued by regional accreditors.

Endowment decreases after underperformance, deficit spending - Gabby Birenbaum, Daily Northwestern

Northwestern’s endowment decreased from $11.08 billion to $10.8 billion in the 2019 fiscal year,after its long-term balance pool underperformed relative to expectations and a withdrawal to offset the University’s budget deficit. The reduction marks only the second time in 10 years that the school’s endowment has decreased year-to-year and is the largest in that time frame. It remains higher than 2017’s $10.5 billion value.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

U Idaho Targets set for cutting UI budget by $22 million - Scott Jackson, Daily News

The University of Idaho’s Information Technology Services and units under the university’s provost, which includes academic programming, are expected to make the largest budget reductions as the UI tries to mitigate a shortfall expected to balloon to $22 million by 2022.

Local ag experts face budget constraints ‘Our capacity to solve problems here at the local level is diminished’ - CAMILLE VON KAENEL, Chico Enterprise-Record

The experts are funded through the University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources division. The state budget for the program has been flat or decreasing over the past two decades. Most recently, the allocated funding stayed the same despite mandatory pay raises amid University-wide budget cuts. That’s meant that many positions have been staying empty once vacated and new positions requested by staff have gone unfunded.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Online education in Pennsylvania could get more competitive thanks to state community colleges - Susan Snyder, Philadelphia Inquirer

Graduates of Pennsylvania’s 14 community colleges can go on to earn their bachelor’s degrees online from a New Hampshire university at a rate that makes it less costly than nearly every other in-state public option, under an agreement signed Wednesday. The agreement with Southern New Hampshire University was arranged through the Pennsylvania Commission for Community Colleges, a nonprofit umbrella association, and marks the first transfer agreement between all 14 colleges and a four-year university.

Reimagining the public university - Naomi Schaefer Riley & James Piereson, AEI

The great state universities are not going to disappear, and many will maintain a standard of excellence, but in an age of inefficient governments trying to do all things for all people, they will not have the money to compete as they once did with high-performing private institutions. The financial model built in the post-war years is no longer sustainable under present circumstances. Academic leaders have tried to circumvent this reality by raising tuition, recruiting out-of-state students, and employing other short-term fixes that fail to address the fundamental problems at hand. It is time they adapt their practices to a new and, in some ways, fundamentally different education marketplace.

Monday, January 13, 2020

Universities need to learn the early lessons of lifelong learning - Andrew Norton, Times Higher Education

Ongoing falls in Australian postgraduate recruitment suggest a trend away from structured education for people in mid-career, says Andrew Norton. For years, future of work reports have warned of major disruption. Artificial intelligence is spreading automation from the factory floor to the offices of university-educated professionals. Workers in jobs that don’t disappear will need different skills and regular retraining. This scenario sounds promising for universities and other education providers, who can prosper from lifelong learners. But recent enrolment data suggest a more complex relationship between work and further education.

Interim president of Dickinson State University proposes layoffs - DAVE THOMPSON, Prairie Public

he interim president of Dickinson State University is planning to propose layoffs to help deal with budget woes. When Stephen Easton was hired to lead the school, he knew he was facing a significant budget issue, he told Prairie Public. Easton said he has to cut $2.35 million per year in order to reach a balanced budget. He said there have been some voluntary retirements and early departures under some incentives, and there have been some reductions in nonpersonnel expenses.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Why does Idaho have to cut the budget in the midst of a booming economy? - BOB KUSTRA, Idaho Statesman

Someone left the control room of Idaho state government, and the autopilot is off course. How else can you explain a national jobs report that is the best in years and a booming economy in the most populous corner of the state that accounts for so much of the tax base of Idaho state government, yet a state budget requiring spending cuts in critical operations of state government?


Idaho State Journal Editorial: Freezing Idaho’s college tuition is a gutsy choice - Lewiston Tribune

What makes this gesture especially gutsy or perhaps courageous is that Gov. Brad Little has already asked all of the state’s colleges and universities to cut their budgets. The fact that Idaho’s higher education system is enacting its first tuition freeze in at least 43 years, meaning the state’s colleges and universities won’t be able to use tuition hikes to offset their budget challenges, is a bold move to say the least considering Little’s decree.

Saturday, January 11, 2020

School for International Training knows it must adapt to survive - Anne Wallace Allen, VT Digger

The School for International Training, a 55-year-old institution with a sprawling rural campus in southern Vermont, has erased a sizeable budget deficit and is reconnecting with the community as it adapts to survive.   SIT is an accredited college  that is part of a Vermont-based nonprofit organization called World Learning that has offices in Washington, D.C., and around the world.  SIT offers an array of diverse low-residency courses, more than 80 summer and semester study-abroad programs in 40 countries, undergraduate credit courses, professional programs and master’s degrees.