Richard Vedder

Obama Needs Push to Shake Up Higher Education

President Barack Obama keeps declaring war on rising college costs. In a speech at Knox College last month, he vowed to unveil an “aggressive strategy to shake up the system, tackle rising costs and improve value.” He said something similar in his 2012 State of the Union address, so I’m a little skeptical that much… Read more »

Professor Petraeus and Other Higher-Education Stunts

When I first heard that David Petraeus was going to make $200,000 for teaching a course and giving a couple of lectures at the City University of New York, I was not indignant. If anything I was surprised by the controversy. Compensation of greater amounts, for lesser amounts of teaching, is routinely granted to people… Read more »

What Do 2,358 College Administrators Do?

For at least a half-century, the University of California has been considered the premier system in U.S. public higher education. The Berkeley and Los Angeles campuses always rank among the top 10 state schools, with several other UC campuses close behind. While the nomination of Janet Napolitano, the secretary of the Homeland Security Department, as… Read more »

Colleges’ Stealth Tax on Family Savings

Believe it or not, Americans used to save about one-tenth of their after-tax income. By the 1990s, that percentage had dropped to less than 5 percent, and from 2003 to 2012 the average savings rate had fallen even further. We can point to many reasons for this decline. An important unrecognized culprit is the American… Read more »

How Poor Students Subsidize Unworthy College Sports

As parents and students struggle to keep up with rising college tuition and take on greater burdens of debt, universities are being challenged to justify the ballooning athletic fees they tack on to the bill. In the 2010-11 academic year, the 227 public institutions in Division 1 of the National Collegiate Athletic Association collected more… Read more »