Realistic Budgeting in a Period of Fiscal Stress
Colleges and universities will be challenged to offer more with less income and smaller student bodies in the 2020s, and for a variety of reason not stemming from the pandemic. Many institutions have already begun to feel the impacts of later marriages and smaller family sizes. The Great Recession made parents and students much more cost conscious. And the financial aid model of heavy discounting with significant tuition increases annually is no longer effective in student recruitment. Additionally, higher education faces significant increased costs from meeting higher student expectations regarding housing, sports facilities, academic support, and pressures for more glamorous eating facilities as well as dormitories that resemble modern apartments. All these cost pressures come at a time where it will be harder to recruit full classes and to retain students recruited to graduation, requiring more costly retention and advising interventions.