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Articles: Asset & Investments

Kristi Eaves-McLennan is executive director of marketing for Meredith College in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Trademark licensing is big business for big universities. The International Licensing Industry Merchandisers Association estimates collegiate licensing programs raked in $209 million in 2015.

LANGUAGE LESSONS—Instructor Mary “Betsy” Bissell teaches a new Niagara U course that introduces students to Tuscarora, a dialect of the Iroquoian language spoken in western New York state.

A handful of campuses teach Native American languages to support the efforts of local tribes to preserve their language and expand their culture’s influence on public education, film and other arenas.

BACK A BOILER—Purdue's self-funded ISA program has served 160 juniors and seniors since its launch in fall 2016 and will include sophomores as of next school year. Students with any major may participate in the program, launched as part of a broader effort to make college affordable.

The ISA concept, which many describe as selling stock in yourself, is now an emerging hot topic within the higher ed financing debate.

Campus discussions about spend analytics might sound like a late night infomercial: Implement the technology and save millions!

In 2002, the question founder Andrew Lippman at MIT Lab's higher ed Viral Communications Group wanted to explore was if there were ways to make things like networks scalable—where the networks get better as they get bigger—as opposed to getting overloaded.

Andrew Lippman is one of the foremost experts on viral communication and digital life. As a founder of MIT’s Media Lab, Lippman had been studying this field long before many of us ever heard of the internet. 

Robert A. Walton is CEO of the National Association of College Stores.

Campus bookstores at most higher education institutions are asked to increase revenues to support operations, scholarships and other campuswide needs as well as drive down prices and ratchet up services to help students.

Recent lawsuits have alleged that certain colleges breached the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), which states employers that sponsor retirement plans have a fiduciary responsibility to prudently manage those plans on the behalf of their employees.

Eight prominent universities—including University of Pennsylvania, Duke, Emory, Johns Hopkins, Vanderbilt and others—were hit with separate lawsuits in August 2016 alleging the institutions mishandled their employee retirement plans.

Kevin Wayer is an international director and co-president of JLL’s Public Institutions group, providing real estate services to higher ed institutions.

To bridge the gap between dwindling public resources and the growing cost of infrastructure and facilities, a public-private partnership (P3) can be a solution that infuses capital into an overstretched budget and makes new development financially feasible.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently completed settlements with the greater part of municipal underwriters and an initial group of issuers under the recent MCDC (Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation) initiative.

Sarah Bassler Millar and Richard Pearl, of Drinker, Biddle & Reath LLP, advise higher ed leaders that fiduciaries should be trained by outside counsel with expertise in ERISA retirement plans.

Recently, plaintiffs’ attorneys have brought dozens of lawsuits against universities alleging that their retirement plan fiduciaries breached their duties under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). A failure to fulfill fiduciary duties under ERISA can lead to serious consequences, including personal liability under ERISA. There are steps fiduciaries can take to discharge their responsibilities and avoid these harsh results. 

Higher ed has become the latest target of retirement plan fee litigation. One firm in particular has filed class-action suits against dozens of universities, alleging breaches of ERISA fiduciary duties.

The tactic has been used for years in business, says Eric Paley of legal consultants Nixon Peabody.

Ken Artin, is a public finance lawyer at Bryant Miller Olive. He can be reached at kartin@bmolaw.com.

There is a great need for infrastructure such as classrooms, student housing, dining and wellness facilities. Public-private partnerships (P3s) are a form of contracting between the public sector and private industry that capitalizes on the potential for private investment in a project, while sharing risk between the public and private partners.

Colleges now enhance game-day experiences with more luxury suites and better wireless connectivity in an effort to lure fans away from the comforts of home and to the stadium. See a slideshow here.

Public-private partnerships are a growing trend that allow universities to fund the construction of new buildings and, if desired, turn over maintenance and operations to skilled partners. Structuring these decades-long partnerships for a successful outcome involves careful planning on the big decisions and the details.

In 2016, news outlets across the nation reported several accidents and inconveniences in private student housing developments.

In Baltimore, a Morgan State University student was fatally stabbed in such a housing complex. At the College of Charleston in South Carolina, a student fell over a sixth-floor railing and was taken to the hospital in critical condition.

And on the eve of finals, 80 UNC-Charlotte students were evacuated from a private housing complex because their building was sinking and deemed unsafe.

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