Monday, March 19, 2018

Non-Traditional Education Leaders Contribution to Universities

Non-traditional education leaders have something to add to higher academia. There was a transition outlined in the Chronicle of Higher Education when universities stopped focusing on their missions and more into big business. This transition has sparked a different mindset in universities and allowed some to grow much larger but may have impacted the focus of these universities.

Have you ever wondered why we build huge college arenas and not science centers or better academics? Part of the reason might be that sports pays money and acts much like advertising. Proving your academic merit is much harder than hiring high quality sports players.

It is much like a business.

Universities need revenue and state taxes sometimes create a budget shortfall. However, so does having too many administrators and not enough academics on hand. Sometimes universities get top heavy and more and more salary and power concentrates into administration than it does in teaching or science.

Not sure how I feel about it. Large universities are great for pooling resources if they are able to teach students useful skills as well as generate new knowledge. I love sports and I do believe they have a place in universities but should not be the major focus of universities.

Universities also need to balance their budgets. That seems to be getting more difficult so it is hard to blame them for doing what they need to to make ends meet. Sometimes I think this is of their own self making. Being as it is, the current model seems to be running at its maximum is likely to change as universities seek to overcome their budget constraints.

This is where non-traditional education leaders are needed. People of different backgrounds, some business backgrounds, and from different industries might just allow for new creative ways of doing things. Sometimes we get stuck in our way of thinking and universities don't adapt to the market as fast as they should. Diversity of thought and background might just help get new ideas to leak in.

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