Dr. John M. McCardell, Jr., Vice-Chancelor of Sewanee: The University of the South announced today that the University Board of Regents has approved a 10% REDUCTION in the cost of tuition and fees for 2011-12. That just takes my breath way.
Sewanee has been a client of mine for quite some time and I have always had the highest regard for the institution, but this just hits it out of the ballpark. McCardell has taken the air out of the higher ed tuition arms race. I work with some really fine institutions that provide a great, no, a really great education that are barely a blip on the radar of college rankings and McCardell has put this issue on the national radar.
The announcement dove-tails perfectly with Malcolm Gladwell’s article in the Feb. 14, 2011 issue of The New Yorker that takes on the college ranking “industry”. The buzz about rankings over time has become too appealing to ignore by both colleges and prospective students. What was once a piece of service journalism has become an institution unto itself and become a “system” for ranking higher Education. Gladwell has pealed back the judging criteria and found the faults. McCardell has seized on that inequity and is calling higher education’s hand. Thank you John!
Please look at this multimedia piece.
Update: My daughter, a junior at Sewanee is quoted in a Wall Street Journal story on the above
Update 02/18/11: Dr. McCardell, a q & a with the NYT