Higher Education Essay

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Tricia Hargrove EDU 701 Dr. Roberts As institutions of higher education strive to full-fill their mission statements, they are faced with the harsh realization that budget and program cuts and faculty layoffs may result in the narrowing of institutional missions. Higher education funding is a tempting target to cut, not only because it is discretionary but also because colleges, unlike many other state programs, can tap other revenue sources, and because a growing proportion of the public believes that students should pay more of their college costs. Higher education is increasingly considered a private good that benefits primarily the individual who receives the degree. And because the individual, not society as a whole benefits from the education—so the argument goes—the individual, not society, should cover its cost. Nearly two-thirds believe that students and their families should pay the largest share of the cost of a college education A dramatic culture shift has occurred in America over the past two decades. In a trend that parallels the "charter school" movement among public elementary schools, a number of colleges are seeking to semi-privatize, causing the growth of privatization of public colleges and universities. Higher education suffers more during economic downturns because lawmakers protect elementary and secondary education, welfare and health care programs in their budgets. These schools say they are tired of getting less money from state legislators. They want to seek additional revenues by setting, and keeping, their own tuition. They also want the freedom to enter into business arrangements without obeying many state rules. There are few signs that state support for higher education will turn around any time soon. Privatized colleges tend to charge comparatively high tuition, which can price out low and middle income students. Rising

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