Jon Marcus
Jon Marcus, higher-education editor, has written about higher education for the Washington Post, USA Today, Time, NBCNews.com, the Miami Herald, the Boston Globe, Washington Monthly, and other magazines and newspapers. He also is the North America higher-education correspondent for the Times (U.K.) Higher Education magazine. His Hechinger higher-education coverage has won national awards from the Education Writers Association and he was a finalist for an award for beat reporting from the New York chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. The former editor of Boston magazine, Marcus holds a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and a bachelor’s degree from Bates College. He teaches journalism at Boston College and Boston University.

Poorest states cut what experts say could help the most: higher ed

CLEVELAND, Mississippi—Conor Bell may give up on the Mississippi Delta. Bell is a junior at a public university in the heart of this poorest corner of the poorest state in America—the birthplace of the blues. But the program that drew him here is being shut down. Bell studies journalism, victim of newly announced cuts to […]

Why two states have poured money into public higher education

GRAND FORKS, North Dakota — Construction cranes sprout like stalks of wheat from the windswept, tabletop-flat campus of the University of North Dakota. More than a quarter of a billion dollars’ worth of new facilities are going up here or have been opened in the last few years. Another $80 million is being spent at […]

Graduation rates are down, not up, since economic downturn

University and college graduation rates have declined since the beginning of the economic downturn, according to a new report, even as policymakers prod universities and colleges to turn out more people with degrees. While enrollment has gone up since 2008, the proportion of students who graduated has gone down, the report, by the National Student […]

Colleges and universities charge more, keep less, new report finds

Forced to keep discounting their prices as enrollment stagnates, U.S. universities and colleges expect their slowest growth in revenue in 10 years, the bond-rating company Moody’s reports. The squeeze could threaten further cuts in services even as tuition continues to increase. A quarter of colleges and universities are projecting declines in revenue, according to a […]

Spiraling graduate student debt raises alarms

An Army veteran, Anthony Manfre paid for his associate’s and bachelor’s degrees mostly with his GI Bill benefits, although he also took out $4,000 worth of student loans. “At the time, I thought that was a lot,” he said. “And now I look back and wish I only owed that much.” That’s because Manfre went […]

Financial benefits of popular short-term certificates questioned

Hugely popular short-term certificates—educational credentials designed to be completed within one year, and being pushed by community colleges and other higher-education institutions—provide almost no financial return to students, according to new research. While earning an associate’s degree or long-term certificate results in a higher likelihood of finding a job, and at a higher salary, short-term […]

New standards seek to measure what students actually know

As students, employers, and policymakers continue to question whether earning a college degree really proves that graduates are ready for work, a new set of voluntary standards proposes to set out what they should be learning—and measure whether or not they have. The Degree Qualifications Profile specifies what students should know and be able to […]

Want higher-ed reform? You may be surprised where you’ll find it

As a top student in high school, Amy Miramontes-Franco knew she was destined for college. But she surprised even herself when, for financial reasons and because she hadn’t yet decided on a major, she began her higher education at a local community college. “In all honesty, I had this mentality where I had worked so […]

LinkedIn ranks colleges by whether their graduates get “desirable” jobs

The nation’s preeminent job networking site is harnessing its vast databanks to join the crowded university and college rankings game, in its case by ranking colleges and universities based on the proportion of their graduates who get “desirable” jobs. Detailed job-placement information by institution is generally not available, including from colleges and universities themselves, which […]

Colleges take cues from private business to improve their customer service

CLAYTON, Missouri — The man in the impeccably tailored black suit has the people in his audience engrossed as he describes the secrets that have made his multibillion-dollar company internationally known for customer service. They’re here to find out how to do a better job of it themselves, in this case from a general manager […]

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