No, the NC Legislature Hasn’t “Harmed” Public Universities

On February 6, the Raleigh News & Observer asked whether the North Carolina legislature has “done enough to actually damage the University of North Carolina System’s traditionally stellar quality during a decade of Republican control?” In a series of articles, it laid out its case that the answer is yes. But the evidence presented, especially … Continue reading “No, the NC Legislature Hasn’t “Harmed” Public Universities”


A Graduate’s Perspective: The Value of First Attending Community College

Scrolling through my social media recently, I noticed a post shared by a friend that read: “@ all high school seniors filling out college applications right now: COMMUNITY COLLEGE IS OK [repeated 7x].” The sharer of the post wrote that she was about to get her associate’s degree and transfer to a four-year school with … Continue reading “A Graduate’s Perspective: The Value of First Attending Community College”


Explaining the High Cost of College

The most striking fact about American colleges and universities over the last fifty years is how rapidly the cost of attending has risen. A good perspective on the college cost explosion is found in a November, 2017 study prepared for the Joint Economic Committee of Congress. It states, “A student working full-time over the summer … Continue reading “Explaining the High Cost of College”


To Survive, Community Colleges Need to Stay True to Their Mission

While community colleges are known as a low-cost path to higher education, some might be shocked to learn that their enrollments took a steeper hit than the four-year sector in the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic. Usually, economic downturns help the two-year sector’s enrollments when learners are attracted by the more affordable tuition and … Continue reading “To Survive, Community Colleges Need to Stay True to Their Mission”


States Need to Take the Lead in Controlling College Costs

The coronavirus pandemic may be nearing its end, but that does not mean a return to normal in all cases. Even before the virus pushed classes out of the physical classroom to online, America’s system of colleges and universities was spiraling out of control with high costs and stagnant innovation. Every year, families about to … Continue reading “States Need to Take the Lead in Controlling College Costs”


Why Don’t Governing Boards Rein in College Costs?

Public higher education was once America’s great enabler, permitting young people from lower-class backgrounds to attend college for very little money and to rise as far as their abilities and drives would take them. That may no longer be the case, according to economists James Koch and Richard Cebula. In their 2020 book, Runaway College … Continue reading “Why Don’t Governing Boards Rein in College Costs?”


New Study Analyzes the High Cost of College

TANSTAAFL. There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch. That’s the pithy way that economists convey the idea that there are always costs associated with the goods and services we consume. Some resources, if only our time, had to be expended so we could enjoy them. Despite foolish talk from politicians about giving us … Continue reading “New Study Analyzes the High Cost of College”


Some Useful Information to Help Students Choose a College

Many students come to regret their choice of college. They expect that getting a degree will mean a significant boost in their labor market prospects, but often their college “investment” fails to pay off. That might be due to a lack of effort on the student’s part.  Quite a few enroll in college mainly for … Continue reading “Some Useful Information to Help Students Choose a College”


The impending surge for the University of Everywhere

The U.S. (make that the world) is on the brink of the greatest educational change since Gutenberg invented printing. That is the argument Kevin Carey presents in his new book The End of College.


How did we get into the Student Loan Mess?

For all of the words devoted to our student loan mess (or "crisis" or "bubble"), little has been written on its origins. We know that student loan debt now exceeds $1 trillion and that many young Americans are struggling with a heavy burden, but how things got that way is largely a mystery.