The information technology (IT) leader on campus today is more likely to spend his or her time preparing business plans than checking server configurations. As high technology has embedded itself into the day-to-day teaching, learning, researching, and administrative tasks of colleges and universities, there has developed a need for IT managers to be able to speak the language of return on investment (ROI), as well as understand the many and varied needs of faculty and students.
Before I read the "2005 Educause Current IT Issues Survey" that annually ranks hot issues for higher education CIOs, I took a stab at guessing what three issues are top-of-mind for IT folks. Well, I nailed two out of three. Funding IT was the winner, followed by security concerns, and strategic planning came in third.
Today's students who take out loans for their undergraduate education are facing the same debt burden as their counterparts did seven years ago, according to a recent study released by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Higher salaries (after adjusting for inflation) and lower payments (relative to the amount borrowed) appear to be the major reasons why there was no increase in debt burden.
EDUCATION IS UNDER ATTACK.
From Bill Gates to politicians, from media pundits to stressed-out parents, and now, from computer network hackers and crackers, it seems like education is taking shots from every which way.
In my home state of Georgia, state funding for higher education took a huge hit in 2004, and prospects are not yet clear for this year. In Washington, the Higher Education Re-Authorization Act is once again up for debate, having failed to be renewed by the 108th Congress.