SOME PROBLEMS OF FINANCIAL ADJUSTMENT TO DEPRESSION
THE relationship between income and expenditure revealed in the preceding two chapters indicates that the colleges and universities of the country did face a difficult problem of financial readjustment. The enrolment data, soon to be presented, will show that in the recovery phase of the cycle, the load to be carried by the institutions has increased far faster than the funds with which to meet it. From this it may be predicted that the financial problems of higher education will continue into the future. It seems desirable, accordingly, to look in a general way behind the statistical materials that have been reviewed and to ascertain what was involved in the adjustments that were made.
It was not until 1931-1932 that the impact of depression upon the campuses began to cause alarm. By this time the "emergency " was evident and plans to meet it were being formulated. The problem at all institutions was to economize without loss of quality or the abandonment of services that had come to be regarded as essential and integral parts of the program of higher education.1 At the same time, it was evident that the growth of the colleges and universities, both in number and in their programs, had been accompanied by a competitiveness and a planlessness that were not entirely commendable. The retrenchments induced by the depression, therefore, called for careful study and consideration. In some respects the adverse economic circumstances could be regarded as an opportunity, although a forced one, to re-evaluate programs and practices to the end that savings might be made through the achievement of greater efficiency. Budgetary though the retrenchments were, they did involve fundamentally far more than a rough and ready slashing of items: broadly they involved consideration of the entire subject of academic support and academic planning.2 It is not surprising, in consequence, to find the____________________