CPAs and Advisors with Your Growth in Mind

SACUBO Meeting Keynote Speaker Discusses Issues Facing Higher Education

Last month, Jim Ratchford , Industry Leader of Cherry Bekaert’s Education Industry Group , attended the Southern Association of College and University Business Officers’ (“SACUBO”) Annual Meeting. While at the meeting Ratchford listened to the keynote speech from Scott Jaschik of Inside Higher Education. Mr. Jaschik shared with attendees various issues currently facing higher education, some of which included the following: The Trump administration is proposing cuts to education programs, including research and work study. International students are choosing higher institutions in countries other than the U.S. Forty (40) percent of U.S. colleges and universities are reporting declines in international applications. Everyone realizes that these students are. Read More.

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University of Louisville Foundation Engaging in Wasteful Spending

The University of Louisville Foundation has released a 135-page report outlining a series of wasteful spending practices. According to the independent investigating firm that authored the report, foundation officers repeatedly spent money on unbudgeted expenses and unapproved actions. Board directors were often kept in the dark on such actions, which prevented them from making informed financial decisions. Further, the report says that the foundation combined cash reserves, which made funding sources for certain transactions difficult to identify.  J. David Grissom, chairman of the University of Louisville’s Board of Trustees, said legal action has not been ruled out, but he expects that. Read More.

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University of Wisconsin Reaches Midpoint of Naming Agreement

With the University of Wisconsin Madison at the halfway point of its 20-year deal to keep the name of its business school intact, campus administrators and donors are reflecting on the agreement. Thoughts have consisted of the upside of the deal and what its future may hold. Most recently, there have been talks on whether donations can be used to delay the ending of the deal. Such talks have opened a larger discussion about college fundraising efforts, naming rights, and the impact on a university’s identity. The discussion has also garnered interest from donors, who consider the Wisconsin naming deal. Read More.

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College Tuition Discount Rate Close to 50 Percent

The National Association of College and University Business Officers’ (“NACUBO”) latest study shows that tuition discounts at colleges and universities are on the rise again. Due to low tuition revenue and weak enrollment numbers, the average tuition discount rate in 2016-17 for a first-time, full-time student increased to 49.1 percent (48 percent for previous year). Counting all undergraduates, the average rate increased to 44.2 percent (43 percent for previous year), marking new record highs for the annual study. NACUBO’s Ken Redd contributes higher financial needs since the Great Recession and growing competition for new students due to a decreasing number. Read More.

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College Freshmen Survey Reveals Political Division

Last fall’s incoming freshmen class is considered the most politically polarized in history. The latest American Freshman Survey revealed that over 42 percent of first-year college students said they were “middle-of-the-road” on political matters. This percentage marks the lowest percentage of moderate students in the survey’s history. In addition, 35.5 percent of students said they were either liberal or far left, while around 22 percent identified as conservative or far right. Over 137,000 full-time college freshmen took part in the survey. More on the American Freshmen Survey is available on Inside Higher Ed.

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Purdue Unexpectedly Acquires Kaplan University

In a surprising move Thursday, Purdue University purchased for-profit school Kaplan University for $1. The deal allows the Indiana-based school to acquire most of the credential-issuing portion of Kaplan’s higher education business. An estimated 32,000 students and 15 campus locations will be impacted by the acquisition, and Purdue says the new university will not receive state funds. While some experts believe Purdue will increase its access to students, others are concerned over the school taking on Kaplan’s reputation for questionable student recruiting practices and credentials. More on Purdue’s acquisition of Kaplan University is available on Inside Higher Ed. Also check out Cherry Bekaert’s Education Group for details on how. Read More.

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