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Author Topic: College Endowments  (Read 1643 times)

theBabyDavid

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College Endowments
« on: January 05, 2019, 01:48:14 PM »
I recently received correspondence from both Harvard and Michigan regarding endowments and strategic plans for the next decade. Harvard has an endowment of more than $40 B while U of M's chest now has more than $14 B. Both universities seek to double their endowments by 2026.

Endowments, especially for private schools, is the sole guarantor of future viability.

My oldest lives in Italy and his Middlebury mail makes it my address. I noted that all of the "Little Ivies" has an endowment in excess of $1 B now.

Marquette's Endowment is still shy of half a billion but there seems to be some muscle movement towards increasing that to above $700 M. I think the administration is making the right moves; they need to because Marquette's stature as a leading private, Jesuit college is at stake. Marquette is decidedly behind its peer group - BC, GU, SLU, UND, Fordham, Holy Cross but has plans that might not bridge the gap but will provide sufficient buffer for remaining competitive for staff, programs, facilities, and students.

But for other schools the future is less clear. What will become of the Ripon's, St Norbert's, Beloit's, and Lawrence's? What is the future for smaller private colleges with underfunded endowments? Can they or will they survive?

There are dozens of small private colleges with robust endowments in excess of $1B. Can a St Norbert's survive into this century?
   
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theBabyDavid

4everwarriors

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2019, 01:58:03 PM »
Pretty tough for schools with less than $150 mil, aina?
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reinko

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2019, 02:00:39 PM »
It’s starting already out here in the Boston area.  Three lower tier private colleges have closed in the past 18 months.  Mt Ida closed and the land was bought by UMass, Wheelock College was absorbed and taken over by Boston Univ, and Newbury College just announced that its done at the end of the year.

Colleges pay their bills in a variety of ways.  Research grants, endowment, tuition $, donations, loans (from fed or privately)...colleges like those above were HIGHLY dependent on tuition dollars, specifically those of wealthier students who pay nearly full freight to keep the lights on.  Not enough rich kids to pay $40,000 a year for a lower tier private education, money runs out pretty quickly.  All of the closures above were announced with 6 months or less notice.

 

warriorchick

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2019, 02:16:33 PM »
A couple of years ago, St. Joseph's College in Rensselaer, Indiana closed.  Most people know it as the former location of the Chicago Bears' training camp and where "Brian's Song" was filmed. I went to school there my freshman year.

Frankly, I don't know why it took so long for schools like St. Joe's to start shutting down.  I saw the warning signs even in 1980.  It relied mostly on huge scholarships to attract students (funded by renting out farmland that they owned) and they were having trouble attracting quality faculty to its remote location.  Most of my classes were a joke.  I partied a lot, barely studied,and still managed to pull a 3.8 GPA. 

You are going to see a lot more schools closing in the next few years.


 
Have some patience, FFS.

WarriorDad

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2019, 02:35:03 PM »
There are about 100 schools with $1B or more, though a number are part of a collective endowment like the University of Texas system, Texas A&M system, Tennessee, California, Pennsylvania and others.

MU about $700M.
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Eldon

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2019, 04:11:08 PM »
A couple of thoughts about St. Norberts and small schools in particular.

Liberal Arts Schools Like St. Norbert Are Fine
I think St. Norbert's will be fine for a long time.  Their endowment is over $100M (or very close to it), which, IMO, is solid for a good-but-not-elite liberal arts college.  St. Norbert's has a strong alumni base that support the school.  Every St. Norbert's grad that I know LOVES the school.

There was a school in VA a few years back (Sweet Briar College) that threatened to close down.  The alums rallied and saved the school--at least for now.  I figure that if a school in rural VA can survive, so can a better school in semi-rural WI.

Furthermore, I think there will always be a market for smaller schools for at least two reasons. 
1)  Smaller class sizes with profs who put teaching above research
2)  Sports: Kids love sports, want to keep playing, but aren't good enough to play at a D1 level


Liberal Arts Schools Like St. Norbert Are Not Fine
There are some structural problems that indeed threaten small schools. 

1)  The Midwest is losing people to the Sun Belt at breakneck speed.  There is a clamor within smaller schools to start recruiting students who live outside of the Midwest.  There is also a push to focus heavily on the existing regional students, "first generation" and Hispanics in particular.  Hence, you see Marquette's push to become a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI).  It's no coincidence that MU has also recently been pushing its Catholic identity hard over the past few years.

2)  Religiosity is dropping among HS grads (and their parents).  Small, private schools are almost always Mainline Protest, which is the fastest sinking ship in the Christian Ocean.  This is true for Catholic schools as well, though, IMO, less so.  Given what I said about Hispanics above, I wonder how Evangelical schools like Wheaton and North Park are faring.

3)  Now more than ever, people (read: parents) are questioning the value of a liberal arts degree.  "History?  What are you going to do with that?"  Schools have responded.  Take a look at the Superbar thread on UWSP, which is now essentially a trade school.  Look at St. Norbert.  They have recently started an MBA program.  To many folks, "liberal arts MBA" sounds like an oxymoron.  Carthage College added nursing as a major.  Several other smaller schools that I know of are starting engineering programs. 

Anyway.

4everwarriors

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2019, 04:17:31 PM »
How duz USNWR rank dem, hey?
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theBabyDavid

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2019, 06:28:38 PM »
I have said it here before:  getting  an MBA from anything less than the top 20 program is a waste of time . An MBA should be a differentiating credential. An MBA from Saint Norbert’s has little more value than one from the University of Phoenix.

Instead,  get a masters in a discipline which bolsters ine’s credentials as a subject matter expert in a particular field (ie  Biology, chemistry, physics, etc. )

An MBA from a UW Whitewater, for instance, Is unlikely to open the big career doors.  An MBA from a Michigan or a Stanford is a very different story .
« Last Edit: January 05, 2019, 06:30:21 PM by theBabyDavid »
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theBabyDavid

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2019, 06:34:29 PM »
but the unnie of Phoenix has its own dome man!

ZiggysFryBoy

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #9 on: January 05, 2019, 06:51:51 PM »
A couple of thoughts about St. Norberts and small schools in particular.

Liberal Arts Schools Like St. Norbert Are Fine
I think St. Norbert's will be fine for a long time.  Their endowment is over $100M (or very close to it), which, IMO, is solid for a good-but-not-elite liberal arts college.  St. Norbert's has a strong alumni base that support the school.  Every St. Norbert's grad that I know LOVES the school.

There was a school in VA a few years back (Sweet Briar College) that threatened to close down.  The alums rallied and saved the school--at least for now.  I figure that if a school in rural VA can survive, so can a better school in semi-rural WI.

Furthermore, I think there will always be a market for smaller schools for at least two reasons. 
1)  Smaller class sizes with profs who put teaching above research
2)  Sports: Kids love sports, want to keep playing, but aren't good enough to play at a D1 level


Liberal Arts Schools Like St. Norbert Are Not Fine
There are some structural problems that indeed threaten small schools. 

1)  The Midwest is losing people to the Sun Belt at breakneck speed.  There is a clamor within smaller schools to start recruiting students who live outside of the Midwest.  There is also a push to focus heavily on the existing regional students, "first generation" and Hispanics in particular.  Hence, you see Marquette's push to become a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI).  It's no coincidence that MU has also recently been pushing its Catholic identity hard over the past few years.

2)  Religiosity is dropping among HS grads (and their parents).  Small, private schools are almost always Mainline Protest, which is the fastest sinking ship in the Christian Ocean.  This is true for Catholic schools as well, though, IMO, less so.  Given what I said about Hispanics above, I wonder how Evangelical schools like Wheaton and North Park are faring.

3)  Now more than ever, people (read: parents) are questioning the value of a liberal arts degree.  "History?  What are you going to do with that?"  Schools have responded.  Take a look at the Superbar thread on UWSP, which is now essentially a trade school.  Look at St. Norbert.  They have recently started an MBA program.  To many folks, "liberal arts MBA" sounds like an oxymoron.  Carthage College added nursing as a major.  Several other smaller schools that I know of are starting engineering programs. 

Anyway.

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4everwarriors

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2019, 06:59:05 PM »
Tyme will tell, hey?
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buckchuckler

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2019, 07:33:41 PM »
I've said it before, and I'll say it again.

Their= possessive of they
They're= slightly shorter than "they are"
There= the opposite of here

Herman Cain

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2019, 07:37:01 PM »
The Small private schools are evolving with the times and putting in programs that make sense. One of the things that many are doing is heavily investing in athletics, as pointed out above, that is very popular with kids. For example there are 250 d3 football programs and more coming.

On a larger scale, there are small schools like High Point University , who have made a major push to upgrade facilities to the point of having a country club atmosphere. They utilize these assets in their majors. For example they have a steak house on campus, that the hotel and restaurant major utilizes for training. They also proudly occupy the low end of D1 which is very enticing to a lot of student athletes.

There is tremendous loyalty to these small schools. I am very familiar with some of the people that rallied to save Sweet Briar. There was no way they were going to let it go down.  College of New Rochelle almost folded , then an anonymous donor came in and saved the school.

My sense is a quite a few schools will opt to merge where it makes sense if they can work through the emotional issues. Some of the deals could actually be pretty good. The merger of the University of Detroit and Mercy College for example has worked out well over time.

Goose

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2019, 07:39:43 PM »
St. Norbert’s is still around? I thought they went off the air.

theBabyDavid

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #14 on: January 05, 2019, 07:45:55 PM »
The problem with the 11th hour Hail Mary bail outs is that they address immediate cash flow issues but not the underlying reasons of the dilemma.

Endowments need to be substantial enough to meet longer term strategic objectives without touching principal.
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theBabyDavid

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #15 on: January 05, 2019, 08:24:58 PM »
Good start to trim the fat would be by getting rid of most of the classes or departments that end with the word, ‘studies.  Next up, bowling, crochet, the wonders of ear hair, how to pop pimples in the dardest places, the meaning of pop art by babies, how to sell swamp land to your best friend...well you get the drift 😳

Cheeks

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #16 on: January 05, 2019, 09:37:08 PM »
I have said it here before:  getting  an MBA from anything less than the top 20 program is a waste of time . An MBA should be a differentiating credential. An MBA from Saint Norbert’s has little more value than one from the University of Phoenix.

Instead,  get a masters in a discipline which bolsters ine’s credentials as a subject matter expert in a particular field (ie  Biology, chemistry, physics, etc. )

An MBA from a UW Whitewater, for instance, Is unlikely to open the big career doors.  An MBA from a Michigan or a Stanford is a very different story .

Two SVPs I deal with at HBO, both have MBAs from Univ of Phoenix.  I generally get what you are saying, but doesn't make it universally so.
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warriorchick

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #17 on: January 05, 2019, 10:04:21 PM »
Two SVPs I deal with at HBO, both have MBAs from Univ of Phoenix.  I generally get what you are saying, but doesn't make it universally so.

Tell those guys to settle their beef with Dish Network so I don't miss the new season of Game of Thrones.
Have some patience, FFS.

buckchuckler

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #18 on: January 05, 2019, 11:05:34 PM »
Tell those guys to settle their beef with Dish Network so I don't miss the new season of Game of Thrones.

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MU82

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #19 on: January 05, 2019, 11:16:47 PM »
I have said it here before:  getting  an MBA from anything less than the top 20 program is a waste of time . An MBA should be a differentiating credential. An MBA from Saint Norbert’s has little more value than one from the University of Phoenix.

Well, Crash, all I'll say is that my daughter got her MBA from a program nowhere near the top 20 and it has helped her career.

As usual, generalizations always suck.
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Rick Majerus' Towel

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #20 on: January 05, 2019, 11:26:39 PM »
There are about 100 schools with $1B or more, though a number are part of a collective endowment like the University of Texas system, Texas A&M system, Tennessee, California, Pennsylvania and others.

MU about $700M.

Keep in mind that until the late 1960s/early 1970s the Jesuit schools purposely did not have endowments.  They raised enough to fund the school and used the rest to assist the poor.

So MU and the other Jesuits only had 50 years to build the endowment.

Rick Majerus' Towel

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #21 on: January 05, 2019, 11:32:27 PM »
I have said it here before:  getting  an MBA from anything less than the top 20 program is a waste of time . An MBA should be a differentiating credential. An MBA from Saint Norbert’s has little more value than one from the University of Phoenix.

Instead,  get a masters in a discipline which bolsters ine’s credentials as a subject matter expert in a particular field (ie  Biology, chemistry, physics, etc. )

An MBA from a UW Whitewater, for instance, Is unlikely to open the big career doors.  An MBA from a Michigan or a Stanford is a very different story .

Soon we might only have 20 MBA programs left.

Universities Take a Harder Look at Whether M.B.A. Programs Are Worth It
At many schools, the degree brings in little more than prestige, pressuring administrators to rethink their offerings
https://www.wsj.com/articles/universities-take-a-harder-look-at-whether-m-b-a-programs-are-worth-it-1509556122?mod=searchresults&page=1&pos=2

Deans and industry-watchers have been bracing for a shakeout in business education. And with Wisconsin School of Business debating the future of its core business degree, administrators now wonder whether more schools will follow the University of Iowa, Wake Forest University and others in ending their M.B.A. programs.

Since the end of the recession, the number of people willing to exit the job market to pursue full-time master’s degrees in business has shrunk. While top-ranked programs with large M.B.A. classes like University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and Harvard Business School continue to rake in applicants and revenue, overall enrollment in two-year, full-time M.B.A. programs in the U.S. fell by more than a third from 2010 to 2016, according to a survey by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, an accreditor.

“Every U.S. program outside of the top 20 highest-ranked schools is under a lot of pressure right now to decide what to do” with full-time M.B.A.s, said Chip Hunter, dean of Washington State University’s Carson College of Business. The school graduated its last class of full-time M.B.A.s in August, but still offers a part-time program.



buckchuckler

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #22 on: January 06, 2019, 12:09:08 AM »
Keep in mind that until the late 1960s/early 1970s the Jesuit schools purposely did not have endowments.  They raised enough to fund the school and used the rest to assist the poor.


Seems like a much better use.
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theBabyDavid

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #23 on: January 06, 2019, 04:22:51 AM »
Keep in mind that until the late 1960s/early 1970s the Jesuit schools purposely did not have endowments.  They raised enough to fund the school and used the rest to assist the poor.

So MU and the other Jesuits only had 50 years to build the endowment.

I was not aware of this. It is actually breathtaking when you think about it.

In the case of MU, it does need to keep up with the Joneses (BC, Holy Cross, SLU, Fordham, GU) if it wishes to remain in the top tier of Jesuit colleges. Presently, these peer institutions have significantly larger endopwments. Factor in Marquette;'s size and the disparity becomes even greater.
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theBabyDavid

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Re: College Endowments
« Reply #24 on: January 06, 2019, 05:39:11 AM »
Two SVPs I deal with at HBO, both have MBAs from Univ of Phoenix.  I generally get what you are saying, but doesn't make it universally so.

I know several senior execs at MSFT, Amazon, and Starbucks who never set foot on a college campus, much less were matriculated from one.

Different industries have unique requirements which establish competence for operational staff.

1's and 0's tech is characterized by coding academy grads more than degree holders from legitimate traditional 4-year colleges. The power generation world requires advanced engineering degrees (unless one is on the SCADA side.)

I have no idea about the entertainment industry but last I checked Barbara Streisand, Robert DeNiro, Mark Ruffalo, et al last walked across the stage as high school students (which might explain their insipid pronouncements on actual current events...)
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theBabyDavid