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Professional Opinion

Kent Runyon is executive director of the Novus Medical Detox Center in Florida.

The U.S. makes up 5 percent of the world’s population, yet it consumes 75 percent of the world’s prescription drugs. Additionally, 52 million people in the U.S. over the age of 12 have used prescription drugs non-medically in their lifetime. With these statistics working against us, it’s no surprise that prescription drugs are being used illegally on college campuses.

Rich Wagner is president of Dunwoody College of Technology.

Technical education is often touted as solely a means of getting a job. There is no doubt that it’s a key reason students enroll in our programs. And yet if all we do is give our students the tools to secure an entry-level position, then we have failed as educators. We have failed the student and we have failed the workforce.

Kimberly R. Cline, president of Long Island University, says branding is essential in higher ed.

Branding may have historically been considered too commercial an endeavor for higher ed, but this mindset has clearly evolved. It’s no longer a question of whether a college should brand itself, but of how it can create an accurate embodiment of its mission and student experience.

Branding a university is fundamentally different than branding a product. A university is a complex, multifaceted institution that cannot necessarily encapsulate its essence with a single word, phrase or logo.

Paula V. Smith is a professor of English and director of the Purposeful Risk Engagement Project at Grinnell College in Iowa.

The academic landscape is fraught with risk—everything from hazardous chemicals and internal fraud, to flu outbreaks and budget shortfalls.

It seems obvious that any college or university would invest effort to identify and rank its current top risks, if just to assign the right level of attention and resources to each. Yet many academic institutions don’t follow through with enterprise risk management (ERM).

Thomas J. Botzman is president of Misericordia University.

The U.S. Department of Education has been working to establish the Postsecondary Institution Rating System (PIRS) since President Obama announced it in August 2013. The proposed system is planned to provide consumers of higher education with objective data and information that helps students make educated decisions between different institutions.

Based in part on geographic proximity and mission complementarity, higher education institutions cater to the fast changing skills development needs of the gaming industry. This is especially true in Las Vegas where UNLV supports the International Gaming Institute which features its prestigious Executive Development Program. UNLV provides knowledge on most aspects of casino management and with courses geared toward executive levels—future leaders of the next iteration of casinos and resorts are trained.

John H. Frederick is provost and vice president for academic affairs at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

Each year, the market for tenure-eligible faculty positions becomes more and more competitive, and a greater number of newly minted Ph.D. graduates struggle to find a job. The U.S. annually produces about 70,000 new doctoral graduates, representing a significant investment of time and money by both the students and their universities.

Robert E. Johnson is president of Becker College in Worcester, Massachusetts.

Much has been written in recent years about the threats robots pose to jobs in America. Conventional wisdom states that machines will eventually overtake the jobs humans do today and then continue on to the future.  So what does this mean to those of us in higher education who are preparing the future workforce? I contend that despite the projected takeover of robots in all industries, college graduates face a bright future.

Carol Long is interim president at the State University of New York, Geneseo.

We are facing unaccustomed financial, demographic and competitive pressures, and if we do not address them now, many of us won’t be around in another 40 years.

This does not mean changing our institutional missions. It means learning to adapt and take risks. We ask our students to take risks every day; now it is our turn.

At the end of the 2014 Little League World Series star pitcher Mo’ne Davis got the call of her life. Mo’ne is only in 8th grade but already she has new learning and earning options. Head Coach of the University of Connecticut women’s basketball team Geno Auriemma acknowledged the 13 year old’s athletic prowess with a congratulatory phone call. A few days later Auriemma was hit with a recruiting violation – go figure. “That’s the world that we live in” said Geno Auriemma in response to the NCAA ruling. It is indeed.

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