Category Archives: Public/private


Moody’s Issues Negative Outlook for Higher Education

On the heels of a similarly downcast assessment by Standard & Poor’s, Moody’s Investors Service has issued a negative outlook for the higher-education sector in the United States. The credit-rating agency also issued individual reports on median benchmarks for the finances of public and nonprofit private colleges, noting significant tuition-revenue declines at both types of institutions.

While American higher education faces limited growth prospects over the next 12 to 18 months, Moody’s says, p…


Texas A&M Pulls in $740-Million for Academics and Football

Texas A&M University announced on Monday that it had received more than $740-million in gifts and pledges for the fiscal year that concluded on August 31. It is a significant achievement, though not technically a record for a public institution since the full amount has not yet been received.

The Council for Aid to Education, which tracks gifts to colleges in its annual Voluntary Support of Education survey, counts only cash in hand, not pledges or intended bequests. An official of the Texas A&M…


Despite Wariness, Outsourcing Pays Off for Universities

Indianapolis — Colleges have moved far beyond hiring private companies just to run their dining services or manage the campus bookstore. In June 2012, for example, Ohio State University signed a $483-million deal to lease its parking facilities to an Australian company for 50 years.

Although there was an outcry from some faculty members, the money added about 20 percent to the value of Ohio State’s endowment, said Michael Papadakis, the university’s vice president for financial services. Mr. Pap…


Charging Tuition Could Put Cooper Union’s Tax Breaks at Risk

41 Cooper Square, a $166-million piece of “starchitecture” at Cooper Union, has become a symbol of the college’s ambitions and financial missteps. (Chronicle photograph by Scott Carlson)

[Updated (7/8/2013, 7:03 p.m.) with comment from Cooper Union.]

Cooper Union’s recent decision to start charging tuition to undergraduates certainly caused an uproar among students and alumni, who saw the move as defying the intentions of the New York City college’s founder, the industrialist and philanthropist …


Governor Cuomo Seeks to Turn SUNY Campuses Into Tax-Free Zones

The 64 campuses of the State University of New York system would become tax-free zones under an economic-development plan announced on Wednesday by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. According to the governor’s office, the “Tax Free NY” program would seek to lure technology companies and other businesses that could make use of the intellectual capital produced by SUNY’s colleges and universities.

In a statement released by Governor Cuomo’s office, Nancy L. Zimpher, chancellor of SUNY, said, “The governor has…


At Portland State U., Beer Is Just Business

Unknown-2They don’t call Portland, Ore., “Beervana” for nothing. The Northwestern city is as well known for its microbrews as for its Bohemians on bikes. It seems that you can’t pedal half a block in that city without running into a brewpub or eatery pouring local suds. Oregon itself consistently ranks in the top five among states with the most breweries per capita—it’s either first, second, or third, depending on your source.

This fall, Portland State University—which, by the way, has a beer named for i…


Iowa’s Public Universities Court Industry Research With Low-Cost Licenses

Iowa’s two public research universities are the latest to adopt policies aimed at attracting more industry-financed research by promising the sponsors simple—and low-cost—terms to license any inventions that result from the work.

Under the new policies, companies that sponsor research at the University of Iowa or Iowa State University and that pay an extra $15,000 fee upfront can receive exclusive rights to commercialize research results without paying additional licensing fees.

The sponsors mus…


Being a Billionaire Means Never Having to Say You’re Sorry

Stanford University announced this week that its spring commencement speaker would be Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg of New York.

If you saw that one coming, we’d like to know whom you’ve picked to win this year’s World Series.

Just two years ago, Stanford was a front-runner in a ballyhooed competition among several universities to build a new applied-sciences campus at the south end of New York City’s Roosevelt Island. Then, in December 2011, Stanford abruptly withdrew its bid, and Mr. Bloomberg an…


Land-Grant Group Sends a Valentine to Public Universities

On the same day that President Obama released his College Scorecard to help students and their families compare institutions, the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities unveiled a data-packed scorecard of its own to show how favorably public higher education stacks up against its private nonprofit and for-profit counterparts.

The 12-page report compares the average list prices of public universities ($8,655), for-profit institutions ($15,172), and private universities ($29,056), and d…


Georgia Tech’s Walmart Will Be More Shoe Box Than Big Box

The first Walmart on Campus opened two years ago at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, just down the road from the company’s headquarters in Bentonville, Ark. (Photo courtesy Todd Gill, Fayetteville Flyer)

The retail giant Walmart plans to open its smallest store in the United States—just 2,500 square feet—this spring on the campus of the Georgia Institute of Technology, in Atlanta.

The store, which will replace a barbecue restaurant on the university’s Tech Square, will be the company’…