Administrative Bloat: Where Does It Come From and What Is It Doing?

Philip Hamburger recently published a piece in the Wall Street Journal arguing that Congress should control administrative bloat by limiting student loan funds given to colleges with too many administrators. He is dead right about the vast increase in non-faculty bureaucracy in recent decades and the need to reduce it. But the sources of the … Continue reading “Administrative Bloat: Where Does It Come From and What Is It Doing?”


A Book Full of Advice for High School and College Grads

America’s education establishment beams out a message to young people like a pulsar: Go to college! A high percentage of them do. Once the students are enrolled, however, the schools pretty much leave them alone. To a large degree, students decide what courses they’ll take. What they do in and out of class is up … Continue reading “A Book Full of Advice for High School and College Grads”


Louisiana Discovers the Always-Growing Costs of Free College

Student loan debt has become a major concern for young people. In response, some Democratic candidates for president are offering “free college” proposals. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders was the first presidential candidate to propose this in 2016. His plan came with a price tag of $47 billion and had the federal government covering two-thirds of … Continue reading “Louisiana Discovers the Always-Growing Costs of Free College”


Bill Roundup: The Higher Ed Topics Prioritized by the North Carolina General Assembly

May 9 was the “crossover” deadline for bills in the North Carolina General Assembly. For a bill to have survived past that date, it must have either passed at least one chamber or carried a substantial spending component. For bills focused on higher education, about a dozen are left standing—mostly because they contain appropriations. Bills … Continue reading “Bill Roundup: The Higher Ed Topics Prioritized by the North Carolina General Assembly”


Forgiving Student Debt Isn’t the Solution to Anything

The time-honored American tradition of outlandish political promises continues apace. Now, the spotlight is on student debt. Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren added to the debate recently when she put forward a proposal to cancel $640 billion worth of federal and private student loans. Warren touts her plan as a way to boost the economy, … Continue reading “Forgiving Student Debt Isn’t the Solution to Anything”


The High Price of Faculty and Administrative Salaries in the UNC System

Faculty pay can vary greatly across universities and even within the same university system. Among University of North Carolina schools, the type of institution can matter as much as a professor’s job title. Yet, for even the most highly paid professors, their salaries are eclipsed by administrators. A Martin Center analysis of salary data from … Continue reading “The High Price of Faculty and Administrative Salaries in the UNC System”


Improving Student Outcomes by Consolidating the University System of Georgia

As the cost of college creeps up and more small colleges close, consolidation has become a lifeline of last resort. To survive, dozens of small institutions have either merged or have been absorbed into larger ones. That way, the threat (usually financial) disappears and students are assured the larger institution is stable. But these mergers … Continue reading “Improving Student Outcomes by Consolidating the University System of Georgia”


How Bad Is For-Profit Higher Education, Actually?

For about fifteen years, from 1995 to 2010, enrollments grew rapidly in the for-profit higher education sector, but since then have fallen substantially. The reason for the decline is mainly the overt hostility to for-profits during the Obama administration. The Department of Education killed off two of the largest for-profit competitors (Corinthian and ITT), and … Continue reading “How Bad Is For-Profit Higher Education, Actually?”


UNC System Schools Profiting Off Unused Student Meals

College meal plans can help students avoid buying groceries and cooking for themselves—but they can also cost thousands of dollars each semester. In the University of North Carolina system, some students get a relative bargain, but others pay 60 percent more with fewer spending options. Even though some UNC campuses take in hundreds of thousands … Continue reading “UNC System Schools Profiting Off Unused Student Meals”


DC Wants to Further Subsidize Higher Education: Here’s Why That’s a Bad Idea

Congressional Democrats are reintroducing the Debt-Free College Act in an attempt to lower costs and increase federal intervention in higher education. This debt-free proposal would require the federal government to match every dollar from states’ higher education appropriations to help students pay “all the costs” of college, Wisconsin Rep. Mark Pocan told reporters. But while … Continue reading “DC Wants to Further Subsidize Higher Education: Here’s Why That’s a Bad Idea”