Find out more about the business of education – from business contingency and continuity plans; to finding the best way to recruit and retain students and staff.

Disaster Favor

Many smaller liberal arts institutions don’t even have secondary server rooms as backups. If an earthquake or flood destroys the single primary server room on campus, an institution won’t be able to issue paychecks or deposit tuition payments. New students won’t be able to register. All of the data stored in the learning management system will be inaccessible to students as well as professors. School may well be over for the year. Because the results can be so dire, more and more schools are building secondary server rooms for disaster backup.

Putting the ‘U’ in EntrepreneUrship

Increasing numbers of colleges and universities, however, are adopting more of a change-agent, upstart mentality. Schools such as the University of Rochester, Duke University, and Case Western Reserve University are prime examples of institutions that are finding ways to circumvent the go-slow approach that long has characterized American higher education. The processes and technologies that these institutions develop find their ways into the marketplace as business ventures. And the creation of these technologies leads universities to beef up their own hiring.

Ready, Set, Graduate

Educators have been less successful in providing access for American students. Access creates the pathway that makes choice possible. Ideally, education should be a series of seamless transitions between various levels and complexities of learning. What has happened in America, however, is that access has become a fundamental stumbling block for students seeking to learn and to advance themselves.

Coming Around Again

Old dogs are learning new tricks as adult students return to colleges to enhance their careers or springboard into new ones. However, to attract these dedicated, engaged scholars, there's one question you should definitely not ask.

Business Continuity Revisited

Following the enormous destruction caused by Hurricane Katrina and other disasters over the past decade, institutions have placed higher emphasis on disaster recovery and business continuity planning, testing, and execution. Business continuity plans are built on a foundation of processes, people, information, technology — and perhaps most importantly, assumptions. Whatever the level of careful planning now in place, we must continue to reassess all of these elements. And whatever was in place before November 2012, Superstorm Sandy forces a careful, objective, and immediate reconsideration.

The Challenge of Team Building

How do you build your team within a culture that the existing senior administrative staff has embraced and protected, and significantly, that may well have defined the senior team more than the team has defined the culture? What happens in those first months when you are the outsider on your own team?

Has interest in sustainability initiatives—from alternative energy and water conservation to “green” landscaping, recycling, fossil-fuel divestment, local sourcing, and more—waned on your campus?

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