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Budgets

As a result of March’s sequestration, colleges and universities are starting to figure out how to deal with government cuts from student loan funding and the trickle down of major cuts to agencies that support the bulk of institutional research and development. Tribal colleges and universities, Hispanic-serving institutions, and historically black colleges and universities have even more to contend with than the average school with cuts from separate federal grant funding they rely on to operate.

America’s higher education system is becoming less affordable for the middle class citizen, due in large part to the loss of public funding. In fact, notes The Campaign for the Future of Higher Education in its introduction to a set of three working papers offering possible viable solutions, between 2006 and 2007 alone the rate of public investment in public higher education dropped by 12.5 percent. Sharp tuition increases have become the substitute, with tuition for California public institutions increasing by 98 percent between 2006 and 2001.

The pace of change in the business offices of universities has never been faster. All eyes are on how institutions will manage the challenges of cost containment pressures, lower federal and state support, and the changing marketplace for higher education. With more demands on your resources—including personnel, capital and time—you have to ensure you are getting the most out of your business partnerships.

Though using outdated manual systems can hinder achieving maximum accountability, compliance, and transparency, many higher education institutions are still using such systems to track time and attendance for their workforce. Introducing an automated workforce management system instead can increase efficiency and maximize productivity and funds. This web seminar, originally broadcast on December 4, 2012, featured the University of Georgia, which realized many benefits after implementing a campuswide automated workforce management system.

The pressure institutions are facing from the growing student loan debt crisis is felt by all departments, from financial aid to admissions. Schools are struggling to justify tuition costs to prospective students, as well as to ensure recent alumni leave pleased with the institution, despite having student loan debt. In this web seminar, originally broadcast on November 13, 2012, representatives from American Student Assistance (ASA), St.

California State University, Fresno, takes pride in its reputation as one of the leading public universities in the state, but last year the business staff discovered that Fresno State was lagging in one noteworthy area: the percentage of students electing to receive financial aid refunds electronically.

Nearly 50 percent of higher education administrators feel their time and attendance systems are out of date, and 53 percent of systems in use by colleges and universities are not automated.

As at most higher ed institutions, administrators at Barry University have made controlling or reducing costs a priority.

Founded in 1940, the private, Catholic, coed liberal arts institution has grown into one of the educational leaders in South Florida, with 2,747 full-time undergraduates and 3,748 graduate students.

The issues of affordability and retention challenge colleges to develop sustainable tuition policies that address the current economic climate yet educate students on the importance of paying their tuition bills on a timely basis. This web seminar, originally broadcast on October 16, 2012, discussed how Nelnet’s solutions, combined with tighter school fiscal policy, can help students meet their tuition obligations even if they do not receive all the financial aid they anticipated.

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