Similar to the cold and flu season, no one is immune to being affected by the current economic downturn. The largest foundations and endowments in the world and most prestigious universities in the nation are also at risk of "getting sick."
Several years ago, I joined a University Cashier department as the first new employee hired after several staff cuts and a hiring freeze. Upon hiring me, my new manager enlightened me about the situation, and how unable he felt to "do any more with less." After thinking about what he said for a few weeks, I wondered if we should change our tack: rather than keep trying to do more, maybe we should do less.
Universities build residence halls with a variety of existing factors: demanding schedules, difficult sites, restricted budgets, and predetermined needs. Frequently universities need early involvement of the structural engineer to meet these requirements. However, most universities don't realize that early involvement of a structural engineer doesn't only help with the scheduling. It also helps in terms of cost and in decisions of which materials may be best for the budget and location.
Health legislation having passed, it's difficult to ascertain its specific effects. Winners could include college students. But this can only occur if universities act to fulfill their fiduciary obligations and avoid suspect school health plan practices benefiting the school over the student.
The information in the Public Agenda's latest report "Squeeze Play 2010: Continues Public Anxiety on Cost, Harsher Judgments on How Colleges Are Run" should really cause a shiver to run down the collective backbones of college presidents and administrators. That is assuming they have a backbone. A topic for another discussion I am sure.
Virginia Tech. Columbine. Northern Illinois University. Today, the names of these schools are recognized across the country for the wrong reasons. They are now headlines seared into the national conscience like the names of early battles in a war that academic board-members and senior administrators have never been trained to address. The harsh reality is that - in one form or another - targeted violence is now happening with rising frequency in our schools (as well as our workplaces, public locations and private residences) every single day.
Perhaps the most painful conversation we have as university administrators is the one with parents when their high school seniors have their hearts set on attending next fall, we have assembled the very best aid offer we can, and a rueful look from mom and dad signals that it isn't good enough. We tweak formulas, adjust loan amounts, and add a bit more to grants, but far too often the amount needed remains beyond that family's reach.
With comprehensive fees for a residential liberal arts education reaching or surpassing $50,000 per year, more and more people are asking the question: Is it really worth that much money to educate anybody, anywhere, at any time? Are the minds of ambitious, intellectually driven young people worth it?
Elmhurst College (Ill.) shares many traits with colleges throughout the country - a private liberal arts college with a religious affiliation; founded over a century ago; located within a quiet residential neighborhood; roughly 38 acres in size; hosts students from many states and countries; and comprised of about 2,400 traditional undergraduates and 230 graduate students.
At the University of San Diego (USD), while students and faculty look forward to summertime, the USD Wireless Team is working without any real breaks. The USD Wireless Team knows that summer brings more than 12,000 visitors on campus for events, sports camps, and conferences. Each year the Team is faced with a number of challenges in supporting these visitors, including providing secure wireless internet access across a campus that spans 180 acres.