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Thread: WCC Member Colleges - Financial Health Grades

  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPtheBeasta View Post
    For Jazz, Liz or anyone on the “inside,” why does college tuition outpace inflation? And is this even a true statement? I have seen data stating things like college tuition goes up 8% per year. Another graph I saw showed it as high as 9% in the 1990s and dropping to 6% by 2013. For comparison, the U.S. inflation average by decade is around 2-3%.
    Great question and you’re absolutely right. The cost of tuition and inflation aren’t even third cousins. Easy answer is it’s the marketplace that enables it; its rare a college pulls back prices or is even penalized with enrollment shortfalls. The GI bill gave birth to the higher education industry and the contiguous baby boom kept it growing. But I’m thinking when the publics started charging market prices for tuition and not just fees, particularly with non-residents, that gave the privates the license to shoot for the moon. Higher ed is like every other consumer goods industry. It’s more like luxury goods. Tiffany and Rolex have brand ascendancy — read the Ivies and Stanford — and have almost no resistance above. And all the other manufacturers from Breitling on down to Hamilton fall in line.

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by MDABE80 View Post
    All thenew, large buildings must be eating budgets up. Seems like tuition has risen directly with the number and expense of new buildings. I doubt a kid can work full time and make his tuition anymore. Loans are built in to the expenses. Kids must have huge debt so the universities continue to expand. It's not that simple but what is the product ? It's the kids any university graduates...
    Not necessarily. Many are covered greatly by donors and remainders may tend to come out of endowments. I don't disagree that the debt situation is a bit out of hand.
    "And Morrison? He did what All-Americans do. He shot daggers in the daylight and stole a win." - Steve Kelley (Seattle Times)

    "Gonzaga is a special place, with special people!" - Dan Dickau #21

    Foo me once shame on you, Foo me twice shame on me.

    2012 Foostrodamus - Foothsayer of Death

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by webspinnre View Post
    From a personnel standpoint, one of the major rises in costs is not the teaching staff, it's the non-teaching staff. All of the different VPs that universities have these days? Added costs, even more including the staff under them. All of the activities that are expected on campus? Extra costs for staff to take care of them. All of the amenities that are expected? Extra costs. Everything that goes into the "university experience" adds to the costs, both personnel and other infrastructure. As a result, many universities have turned increasingly to adjuncts to reduce the personnel costs of their teaching staff because of the increased costs for everything else.
    I am an adjunct at Gonzaga and I absolutely LOVE my opportunity to support the students in my part-time role. The adjunct pay is very modest, but I have other solid income so I get to use my GU income for personal, fun stuff. But I have often wondered about what seems a prolific increase in VP-of-this, and VP-of-that. I'm not talking about the non-teaching staff that serve in needed administrative and other operations functions, but what webspinnre mentions above. Many of those VP and related roles seem like "prestigious fluff" and I gotta believe those positions will need to go away if schools are pinched financially. I'm certainly not an expert, but do we really need to coddle our students all the more with these types of "amenities"?

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzdelmar View Post
    Great question and you’re absolutely right. The cost of tuition and inflation aren’t even third cousins.
    I calculated that my college expenses (at Seattle University) were only about 5% of what they'd be today; hence today's 4-year college costs are about 20 times greater.
    In that same period, inflation has reduced the buying power of the dollar about 5 to 6 times... much, much less than 20 times, as jazz notes above.

  5. #30
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    Being a novice in this conversation, how will this have an effect on GU going forward?

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bogozags View Post
    Being a novice in this conversation, how will this have an effect on GU going forward?
    A college such as St. Mary's may close, fini, no longer a WCC school competing with Gonzaga. Seem far-fetched? It is predicted that hundreds of colleges will close in the coming years. Six have closed in WA, OR, CA in the last several years. Washington: Trinity Lutheran College (2016); Oregon: Concordia University of Portland (expected 2020), Oregon College of Art and Craft (2019), Marylhurst University (2018); California: Coleman University (2018), Shepherd University (2017).

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bogozags View Post
    Being a novice in this conversation, how will this have an effect on GU going forward?
    Probably not much. GU's endowment is fairly solid for the size of the university. Couple that with a fairly generous alumni base and they will be just fine.
    "And Morrison? He did what All-Americans do. He shot daggers in the daylight and stole a win." - Steve Kelley (Seattle Times)

    "Gonzaga is a special place, with special people!" - Dan Dickau #21

    Foo me once shame on you, Foo me twice shame on me.

    2012 Foostrodamus - Foothsayer of Death

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