Viewpoint

Becoming Need-Blind in an Environment of Need

How one institution has made it work

Chances are I am not the only college president being asked these days why my institution is not following Sewanee's lead and reducing tuition by 10 percent—or more.

Several years ago, before the recession, I was being asked a different question about my institution, Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y.: Why are we still including loans in student financial aid packages when a number of peer colleges have eliminated them?

And I imagine some of my presidential colleagues have been asked about Hamilton's decision last March to adopt a need-blind admission policy.

Three-Year Degree Equality

Making accelerated options available and possible for any student

The growing trend toward three-year degrees in America has not been a quiet transition. Many of the major media outlets have covered the seemingly sudden phenomenon that will undoubtedly change the landscape of American higher education. Experts and politicians have sounded off on how the new model will redeem struggling institutions and answer problems associated with rising tuition costs.

Community College/Four-Year Partnerships

A proposal about the intersection of today's and tomorrow's student marketplace

Do you believe that some of the best and brightest of the next greatest generation of college students will begin their higher ed experiences at a community college? Well, we do. That is why we reallocated over $7 million of scholarship funds and operating support at Bucknell University (Pa.) for a period of six academic years to facilitate the Bucknell Community College Scholars Program.

Seven Habits of Highly Effective For-Profit Colleges

What traditional colleges can learn from for-profits

For-profit colleges have been under congressional scrutiny because they appear to be underperforming in enrollment, academic quality, and college loan repayment. I lead a company at the forefront of marketing traditional colleges, and our team believes that—regardless of the outcome of these investigations—traditional colleges and universities can learn some powerful lessons from the meteoric rise of their for-profit brethren. Here are seven of those lessons.

Opportunities, Risks, Rewards

Considering textbook rental and making it work

With the rising cost of higher education a challenging reality for students and educators, affordability is being addressed by legislation on both state and federal levels. For example, institutions are being urged to explore cost savings for students via provisions in the Higher Education Opportunity Act. At Grand Rapids Community College (Mich.), our bookstore operator partner, Follett Higher Education Group, approached us about their Rent-A-Text program.

Renovate and Reuse: Higher Education's New Mantra

Implementing a strategy with academic, economic, and other benefits

Over the past few decades, colleges and universities have engaged in a kind of facilities arms race to build new, state-of-the-art dormitories, dining halls, classrooms, athletic complexes, and fine arts centers. Higher ed institutions face enormous competitive pressures to build buildings that rival what's on their peers' campuses. For many, cutting-edge means new.

Utilizing Architects to Aid in Construction Funding

Five ways these firms can help in cultivating donors and soliciting gifts

For many campus building projects, the period following schematic design is critical to the project's future. With the proposed design illustrating the building's significant forms, program, functional relationships and scale, the project enters the fundraising phase. Design work on higher education cultural projects—such as museums, studio-arts buildings, performance halls and affiliated classrooms, as well as sports facilities, alumni centers, and science buildings—often pauses following schematic design so that university leaders can raise funds for construction.

What's In, What's Out

Technology trends in the year to come

Student Ambassador Programs: A Hidden Resource

Saving money, earning reputations

In today's difficult economy, colleges and universities are suffering like they never have before. Fundraising levels have dropped dramatically, and the amount donated annually by supporters is roughly half of what it was a few years ago. Endowments are suffering, which impacts schools' ability to support students and programs. In addition, with federal and state budget cuts also running rampant, faculty and staff are being laid off, regardless of their credentials and ability.

Making Choices

Sustainability in a world of conflicting values

Mark Edlen, a Portland developer and businessman with Gerding Edlen, sees the commitment to sustainability as both a political movement and a business strategy, as noted in an April 14, 2010 article in The Oregonian. In explaining his new business approach, Edlen said, "The big thing for my generation was Vietnam and civil rights. For the young people of today, it's their environmental footprint." He is convinced the green economy is one of the country's primary economic engines. In his case, this means sustainable building has arrived as a viable business strategy.

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