Highlights from Higher Ed: Fewer Donations, MBA Hiring Freezes and Affordability Woes

Laura Miller
Jun 12, 2020

College fundraisers anticipate “steep nosedive” in donations

Donations to colleges are likely to decline over the next few years at least as dramatically as they did in the wake of the Great Recession, according to a recent survey of more than 100 development leaders. More than 40% of fund raisers said they expect donations to drop by at least 10% during the 2020 fiscal year. “A slightly higher share said they expected that level of decline to continue in 2021, with a big proportion of the drop coming from an expected loss of multimillion-dollar contributions.” One in five said they expect a decline of at least 20%. The “steepest drop in giving on record” occurred during the 2009 the financial crisis, when donations dropped off by almost 12%.

Source: The Chronicle of Higher Education

Most business schools report hiring freezes for grads – except those in tech, healthcare and finance

More than nine in 10 business schools (93%) said they have seen hiring freezes as a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic, although “technology, healthcare and financial services [are] the industries best eluding the freeze. Tech, in particular, has been largely immune to the icy employment environment, with 88% of respondents saying they still see hiring activity in that sector.” The survey also revealed that, as of the last week of May, 43% of business schools still hadn’t made a decision about remote learning in the fall semester, and 57% hadn’t yet made a decision about recruiting activities. In addition, “83% of schools report delayed start dates for MBA graduates; 75% report fewer job postings altogether; and 65% report rescinded offers. Another 52% reported delayed offers, and nearly half, 49%, reported jobs becoming completely virtual. Almost as many — 43% — reported jobs becoming partly virtual.”

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Source: Poets & Quants

Half of college presidents say in-person classes this fall are “very likely”

Approximately half of the 310 college leaders recently surveyed by the American Council on Education said their institutions are “very likely” to resume in-person classes during the upcoming fall semester — albeit with significant new rules in place to limit the spread of COVID-19. For example, “about two-thirds of presidents with on-campus housing say they plan to set up a space to quarantine students” and more than half said they will require masks to be worn on campus. Presidents’ outlooks varied depending on the type of institution they oversee. “Fewer than 40% of presidents at [two-year] schools said they would ‘very likely’ start the academic year in-person, compared to 53% of all leaders who said the same. Five percent of two-year college presidents said they have decided not to restart fall classes on campus.” Almost 60% of the presidents said they would announce their plans by June 30.

Source: Education Dive

Most college students say they can no longer afford to attend, due to pandemic

A survey of more 10,000 current freshmen, sophomores and juniors at more than 200 U.S. colleges and universities revealed that most (56%) believe they can longer afford to pay tuition. “Just about half of all undergraduates said they need to figure out a new way to pay for school because of the impact of the pandemic on their financial standing,” and “nearly 7% of students have already had to unenroll to find full-time employment or alternative education options.”

Source: CNBC

Laura Miller

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