Higher Education Could Be Facing Crisis Without Reevaluating Debts, Policies

Thursday, January 3, 2013
Is Higher Education Going To Crash? It is a subject few want to address but may be the next big crisis facing Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration. No, it has nothing to do with the City of Detroit, but everything to do with the future of higher education in Michigan. Education DOES matter. There has been much debate swirling around our public schools and municipalities which have failed to lead, manage, and control spiraling health care and pension costs and are now engulfed by debt, layoffs, service elimination and in some cases, the appointment of emergency managers or draconian consent agreements to reign in costs and mismanagement. Why should we think some of our institutions of higher learning may not be subject to these same pressures and maladies? According to a story in The Economist, The College-Cost Calamity, many American universities are in financial trouble and have been piling on debt at alarming rates. Between university debt, changing demographics, legacy costs, competition from for-profit educational institutions, soaring student debt, state funding cut backs, philanthropy drying-up and skyrocketing tuition and fees, we may be heading for a crisis.

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