Needing Revenue, Old Universities Open New Campuses Where Students Are

Career College Central summary:

  • The Charlotte branch of Northeastern University, the 116-year-old Boston instituion, is an example of a new phenomenon in U.S. higher education: Rather than waiting for students to come to them, universities are coming to the students. They’re also following the money, launching money-making graduate programs that generate revenues for the home campus.
  • Several older colleges and universities, most of them from slow-growth areas in the East, are opening or expanding campuses in places with booming populations and economies, zeroing in on cities where there is demand for mid-career education, but not enough supply.
  • Emerson College, also in Boston, has just premiered a Hollywood, Calif. campus. Bentley University, of Waltham, Mass., opened a San Francisco branch last year. Seeing unfulfilled demand in the Pacific Northwest, Northeastern also established a Seattle campus last year. And the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania — the nation’s oldest business school—was doing so well after a decade in San Francisco that the school has expanded its campus there by one-third.
  • Like Charlotte, San Francisco, Seattle and Los Angeles represent high-growth opportunities for higher education at a time when enrollment in the East is declining. San Francisco and Seattle are also among the 20 fastest-growing major U.S. metropolitan areas, census records show, and the Los Angeles area has the nation’s second-highest population, after metropolitan New York.
  • “It’s a growing phenomenon, and it’s going to continue,” said Matthew Hamill, senior vice president at the National Association of College and University Business Officers. “If your student population is not growing, you’re looking at what you do best and the future of your programs, and opportunities to enter a new market can be extremely beneficial.”

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