by Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, President Emeritis, The George Washington University, and Gerald B. Kauvar, Research Professor of public policy and public administration, The George Washington University
Because of increased financial constraints on all State supported and most independent colleges and universities one reads and hears more and more about the wisdom of fully utilizing existing facilities in order to lower costs and expand access. Legislators and institutional leaders are climbing on the bandwagon. More and more institutions are exploring ways or exploiting existing ways to encourage students to complete their degrees rapidly. Opportunities for earning a degree in three years are being publicized and encouraged by college counselors and publicists, and media pundits.
A couple of years ago, we published an op-ed piece in the New York Times which argued for better utilization of our post-secondary institutions by using facilities on a year around basis. For many students, so doing would enlarge the possibilities to earn a degree in three years – not all students, but many students. And they would save a bit of money by foregoing any tuition increase that would become effective in the fourth year.
The op-ed piece we wrote was widely criticized, though rarely for anything we stated or implied in the article. READ MORE....