News & Events / It’s time to rethink incentives for higher ed

It’s time to rethink incentives for higher ed

Published Aug 30, 2023

By Scott Pulsipher, Contributor and Michael Horn, Deseret News

In recent months, discussions on the escalating cost of college — and subsequent debt passed onto students and taxpayers — have illuminated an affordability crisis that is hindering the ability of individuals to get ahead in life. Paired with underwhelming and uneven student outcomes, the reality is that colleges in America have a spending problem. Only by increasing affordability and value for students can we reinvigorate the promise of higher education for all.

Higher education has long been on an unsustainable cost trajectory. Since 1970, spending from public colleges and universities rose from nearly $104 billion in today’s dollars to $420 billion by 2020. Altogether, post-secondary institutions now spend more than $670 billion per year — and for what?

Completion rates remain stagnant, significant equity gaps persist, and 650 institutions serving approximately 1.5 million students do not provide their students with a minimum economic return after accounting for the cost of attendance, according to the Postsecondary Value Commission.

Read the full article at Deseret News.