The right way to downsize American higher ed

May 29, 2019 | The Week

The American university is shrinking.

It has been a relatively quiet downsizing so far, but it’s going to get louder in the years ahead. College enrollment is decreasing nationwide. Lower-tier schools are struggling to meet enrollment goals, and even mid-tier schools are scrambling to develop new fiscal strategies. Partly, this shift just reflects the fact that college is extremely expensive. Millennials have supplied their predecessors with cautionary tales about the crippling burden of educational debt. Generation Z now sees the wisdom of considering alternatives to college. Beyond that though, there is the reality that birth rates have been falling in America for many years. Fewer babies in 2002 means fewer college applicants in 2020.

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