MARGUERITE J. DENNIS
BULLETIN # 10 MAY 25-29, 2020
“The world is changing. Understand what’s ahead.”
Author’s Note: For the past ten weeks I have attempted to share with you my
insights and predictions about the impact of COVID-19 on higher education. Like
many of you reading these bulletins, my focus was on the immediate impact of
the virus on the spring and fall terms.
Next week I will travel from Naples, Florida to Cape Cod, Massachusetts so
Bulletin # 11 will be sent to you not on June 5th but on June 12th .
The bulletins in the upcoming weeks and months will move from the immediate
to the long-term. I will focus my research not on the rethought college or
university but on the reimagined one. I will write not about strategic plans, but
rather about vision plans. I will share research not on the new normal but on the
normal, not on the ephemeral, but on the permanent.
I trust you will find this information both insightful and useful.
JUST THE FACTS
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institutes of Health in the United
States believes there will continue to be outbreaks of COVID-19 in the fall and
winter months and cautions that there cannot be a single plan for when and how
colleges in the U.S. open safely for the fall term.
A survey of 310 college presidents conducted by the American Council on
Education revealed that more than half, 53%, plan to resume in-person classes in
88% of surveyed colleges and universities in the U.S. expect international student
enrollment to decline in the 2020-2021 school year and 30% expect a substantial
decline. (The Hechinger Report)
A series of interviews with affluent Chinese parents revealed a re-evaluation of
sending their children abroad for college. Economic uncertainty, certain countries’
responses to the pandemic and rising anti-Chinese sentiment in certain parts of
the world were the reasons cited. (South China Morning Post)
Indian students are changing or delaying their plans to study abroad for the fall
term. Canada, Germany, and the UK have emerged as countries of interest to
potential Indian students.
ECONOMIC IMPACT OF COVIS-19
High unemployment rates throughout the U.S. will result in state budget cuts due
to the loss of tax revenue. Many institutions will be forced to raise tuition. Many
prospective domestic students will be unable to pay the increased costs and many
prospective international students will not be interested in paying the higher
costs. Fewer international students translates into fewer U.S. jobs; 455,000 fewer
The pandemic has already cost UK universities an estimated 790 pounds. For most
schools the shutdown has meant no or reduced income in accommodation,
catering, and conference revenue.
In the U.S. auxiliary income from bookstores, residence halls and summer camps
was $44 billion in the 2017 fiscal year. Like in the UK, the virus has shutdown most
of the operations that would or could produce that level of income this year.
Australia expects its higher education sector to lose between AUS$3 –6 billion for
this academic year.
Robert Jackson, Chair of the Global Carbon Project at Stanford University,
reported that carbon emissions have dropped 17% during the pandemic.
The University of California announced this week that it is divesting its $126
billion portfolio from fossil fuels into more environmentally sustainable
investments, such as wind and solar energy.
David Green, president of Colby College in Maine, announced yesterday that the college has pledged to find jobs for all of its students.