- The Chronicle of Higher Education revisited nearly 50 years of headlines pertinent to faculty issues, including tussles with administration over salary and benefits, access for black faculty members, tenure and governance.
- The pressures of publishing, sparse entry points for women and the increasing numbers of older professors remaining active in their positions remain as pressing today as they were throughout the 1970s and into the early 2000s.
- The striking similarity of the headlines shows the level of strain for the higher education industry that has been nearly 50 years in the making, and has only increased with the explosion of technology and change of attitudes towards education over the same period.
Colleges and universities have long been struggling with the reality of having too many people, too many facilities and not enough time to raise enough money to pay for it all since the latter part of the 20th century. But what the nation did not expect was the explosion of minorities attending college, manufacturing dying off as an industry and giving way to higher education as its own industrial certification industry, the explosion of college athletics as a recruitment tool, and the value of research to state and federal government.
All of these changes continue to give the impression that college education is a thriving industry, but leaders must find a way to scale the realities and expectations back to what best fits the needs of communities around them. How do campuses make women and minorities a bigger part of academia, while finding ways to pay and promote equally? Is the 21st century approach to growing a student body increasing remedial support, or recruiting more college-ready students? The answers to these questions are the solutions to what has plagued the business for more than 50 years.