misterskank and I are pretty critical of Dean Dad's writings, but he came through with a gem on this one. It's pretty clear that there is no future in government-funded higher education, and the prospect for the Wal-Mart-style for-profit education sector is uglier. The future: ever more students, less pay, less benefits. Health insurance? Bah! In short, all of higher education will slowly turn into Adjunct Hell (not a pretty place, y'all; I know from firsthand experience). Get your online Ed.D. so YOU TOO can have a future in academia as an administrator for armies of adjuncts and TAs!
I try to stay positive in public, since part of my job involves setting a tone, and campus morale is a real, if fuzzy, issue. So I'll use pseudonymity here to tell the truth. We simply can't keep doing what we're doing. We're running on fumes and goodwill, and you can't do that forever. The funding increases necessary just to get to 'sustainable' -- let alone 'exemplary' -- are unimaginable. Several areas of the college are still functioning only because a dwindling number of staffers are doing heroic work, and you just can't keep doing that. When heroism becomes the budgetary baseline, even getting to 'sanity' takes substantial increases. In many of the 'support' areas of the college, that's the dilemma now.
We're way past the point of obvious answers, easy villains, or nips-and-tucks. We need major structural changes, some hard choices, and a sustained shitload of money. Skip any one of those, and the next generation gets to choose between DeVry and McDonald's.