Institutions target baby boomers with hefty tuition fellowship programs
- The Wall Street Journal reports that a growing number of post-secondary fellowships are geared toward advanced-career workers and retirees to study alongside traditional undergraduates.
- Stanford and Harvard universities piloted the first advance-career education fellowship offerings, according to the WSJ. Other schools, including the University of Notre Dame and the University of Minnesota, now are following suit.
- College representatives say these fellowships, which often cater to baby boomers seeking a second act, are a win for institutions’ bottom lines because they target white-collar workers paying sometimes hefty tuition fees.
Baby boomers are a small cohort of the estimated 31 million non-traditional adult learners who could help supplant the national drop in college enrollment and help colleges’ improve their financial outlooks. Recruiting and retaining these students require a rethinking of curriculum and other school requirements to improve flexibility and more strongly connect education with job opportunities.
While many baby boomers can afford to return to college, adult learners often need more support. These learners, who typically have families and job commitments, want assurance that college coursework will enhance or accelerate their careers. In addition to a well-thought-out strategy, institutions may better serve this underserved population with collaboration form government agencies and businesses.
- Wall Street Journal Baby Boomers looking for reinvention try college — again