STUNG by recession and a decade of declining federal presence in
health, education, and welfare, America's institutions of higher
learning are rethinking for the long term:
*In California, the guarantee of a place in public college,
university, or community college for every qualified Californian -
the foundation of the state's 1960 Master Plan for Higher Education
- is on the table for reconsideration.
Hit by soaring enrollment and dwindling budgets, presidents of
the nine-campus University of California (UC) system, the 20-campus
California State system, and the 107-campus community college
network say they cannot accommodate all eligible students, as the
*In Texas, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board - faced
with the highest enrollment in state history - last week began
appointing representatives from colleges statewide to consider ways
of capping attendance.
Faced with fewer dollars and 130,000 more students than in 1985,
the new task force will analyze how to consolidate programs, focus
on individual campus strengths, and eliminate overlapping course
*At the Universities of Michigan, Iowa, and Colorado, cutbacks
in state funding this month have goaded long-term moves to reduce
course offerings, lay off faculty, increase student fees, or cut
Michigan's Provost's Advisory Committee on Excellence has asked
the university's world-renowned medical school to trim its budget
25 percent over four years.
"There are so many other claimants on state monies that
universities are just not getting what they've been used to," says
Robert Clodius, president of the National Association of State
Universities and Land Grant Colleges. "The result is a protracted
"Throw a dart at a map of the US and you find the same problems
in every state, public and private institution alike," adds Robert
Rosenzweig, president of the Association of American Universities.
Besides Texas, California, and Florida - where burgeoning
immigration exacerbates the complexities of equal access for
minorities - states worst hit are Massachusetts, Connecticut, New
York, Virginia, and Oregon.
Though enrollment pressures are greater in the West than the
East, observers note that estimated student population increases
for 1993 and 1996 will similarly pinch every institution in the
"The level of spending that all US institutions enjoyed in the
'80s simply cannot be maintained," says Yale spokeswoman Martha
Matzke. "This is the beginning of a long-term retrenchment. …