As pressure mounts against small liberal arts schools, leaders make their case

Dive Brief:

  • Inside Higher Ed reports on the convening of several liberal arts college leaders, who gathered to discuss strategy and climate closing in on their missions and output expectations. 
  • Organized by the non-profit Endeavor Foundation, the meeting allowed presidents of schools with fewer than 800 students to discuss challenges in marketing, geographic reach and enrollment. 
  • While most of the campuses face significant challenges with tuition revenues, they all are optimistic about continuing fundraising successes from wealthy graduates and philanthropists.

Dive Insight:

While much can be made about the value of institutions with small class sizes, nurturing environments and competitive academic training, there is also a very real notion that campuses are businesses which can't afford to be changed easily by the times. This is why conversations about diversity and alternative revenue sources are important, but frequently fly in the face of some small liberal arts schools which geographically cannot look to expand in either area. 

The goal for these schools is to find corporate partnerships which can carry the message of their value, affordability and benefit on their behalf. These partnerships not only benefit workforce development, but marketing and alumni relations value as well. 

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Filed Under: Higher Ed