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Statement by the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities on the U.S. Department of Education’s Financial-Responsibility List

News Release
June 27, 2012

NAICU comments on what the U.S. Department of Education’s financial responsibility list means for consumers considering private nonprofit colleges, and expresses concern about the underlying test’s accuracy. The test, which was created to evaluate the financial health of colleges participating in the federal Title IV student aid programs, has come under increased scrutiny.

NAICU Letter to the Washington Post

Re: “Online comparison–shopping tool makes costs of college clearer,” Michelle Singletary column, April 14
April 17, 2012

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's college cost website can be useful for comparing financial aid award letters and is graphically appealing. However, the site's entry point provides confusing and inaccurate information that muddies the true cost of college.

NAICU Letter to the Washington Post

Re: “Some welcome steps toward reducing the cost of college”
December 2, 2011

While I agree higher education must continue to find new efficiencies, cut costs, and improve affordability (Editorial, "Some welcome steps toward reducing the cost of college," Dec. 2), I find it deeply disturbing that the Post buys into the urban myth that federal student aid is a college cost driver. Federal studies conducted during the George W. Bush and Bill Clinton administrations*, and most education economists, have found no evidence that federal student aid fuels tuition increases.

Valuing A Liberal Arts Education In A Jobs-Focused World

Hartford, Conn., Courant - Column
August 22, 2011

Trinity College Professor Stefanie Chambers reminded me that in a world overloaded with media and information, students need critical thinking and writing skills more than ever. The problem is that things really have changed dramatically since the high water mark for liberal arts education in the 1960s. We live in a time when college graduates depart campus with an average of $24,000 in loans and the unemployment rate for people in their early 20s is more than 14 percent. Is it fair to pretend that a true liberal arts education should not have anything to do with paying the bills later in life?

Trust's Assumptions Are Unreasonable at Best

Chronicle of Higher Education - Letter to the Editor
June 26, 2011

Education Trust's unreasonable, if not outlandish, research assumptions and untested data lead to research findings that generate sensational headlines and have the potential to detract from serious policy discussions. It strains credibility for Education Trust to report that less than one-half percent of U.S. four-year colleges and universities effectively serve low-income students.

NAICU Letter to the Christian Science Monitor

Re: Obama's biased bashing of career schools
October 8, 2010

There's a touch of irony here: In response to what you view as "biased bashing of career schools" by the Obama administration (The Monitor's View, October 7), you respond with your own biased bashing of traditional colleges. That's hardly an example of the kind of accountability for all of American higher education which you claim to seek.

5 Marketing Questions

Inside Higher Ed
July 23, 2010

In these tight budget times, colleges and universities are intensely focused on protecting and growing their revenue sources. This is drawing increased attention to the marketing function. Marketers with a successful track record inside higher education or from the corporate world are being considered for "chief marketing officer" positions.

NAICU Letter to the Wall Street Journal

Re: "The Fat Envelope, Please"
April 4, 2009

Students and families considering private colleges should not be scared off by Mr. Kahn's pessimistic and largely anecdotal assessment of private higher education's affordability and value ("The Fat Envelope, Please," opinion, April 3). For many students, the silver lining in the recession will be larger student aid budgets and smaller tuition increases in 2009-10.

NAICU Letter to USA Today

Re: "Colleges duck tough cuts, keep hiking pay and tuition"
March 31, 2009

I was stunned that USA Today would ignore the significant sacrifices private colleges and universities are making to keep student out-of-pocket costs as low as possible during these tough times ("Colleges duck tough cuts, keep hiking pay and tuition," editorial, March 30).

NAICU Letter to the Chronicle of Higher Education

Re: “Washington Has Failed the Workhorses of American Higher Education”
March 23, 2009

Diane Auer Jones is a fair and independent thinker, and a friend of all sectors of higher education.  However, on the issue of a federal student unit record database, she does not fully understand the policy concerns of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (“Washington Has Failed the Workhorses of American Higher Education,” commentary, March 27). There is a legitimate privacy question here, and to dismiss NAICU’s motives as being otherwise diminishes the very real changes in privacy policy that have emerged as these databases are built throughout the nation. 

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