Trouble on Campus

Wall Street Journal reporting on some issues that are threatening college sustainability.

Take a look:

While there is no single number that indicates a tipping point to becoming unsustainable, said Ken Redd, senior director of research and policy analysis at NACUBO, “It’s becoming more and more of a strain on schools.”

Since private, nonprofit schools get more than a third of their total funding from net tuition revenue, the NACUBO report warned, continued declines in that pool of money “may limit institutions’ ability to fulfill their educational and public service missions.” The authors added, “The situation for small institutions appears even more precarious.”

The source of financial aid dollars is another cause for concern. Schools in the study reported that, on average, 10.7% of total undergraduate institutional aid was funded by endowments; there is no dedicated revenue source covering the rest.

Yikes. It’s a good idea, but the smaller schools, which are nonetheless full of hard-working educators and staff, are going to need a different model if they want to still be around in a few decades.

It’s hardly a bad time if you’re a student, unless, of course, your school eventually goes belly up like some have.

Considering I’m about to get a doctorate (although we’ll see whether or not I work in academia…), it’s something worth keeping an eye on.