Why I Shut Down : Sweet Briar College, The Historic Perspective
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Why to shut down: Sweet Briar College, the historic perspective.
John R. Thelin called the period from 1970 to 1980 “turbulent waters” for all institutions (Thelin, 2011, p. 317). After the golden age, the industry of Higher Education in the U.S. faced the not-so-bright future with a lot of colleges and universities being shut down. Thelin (2011, p. 337) points out that the institutions could have been prepared to handle the steadily declining enrollment, decreased revenues, decline in funding, stagflation, and rising campus maintenance costs if only they picked on the first signs of upcoming financial crisis when in 1970, the share price of the NSMC fell from $140 to $7 over the short period of time (Thelin, 2011, p. 317). However, the universities and colleges of that time were so confident and relied on “the public image of higher education as a “growth industry” (Thelin, 2011, p. 318) so much, that they were not monitoring the changing situation and thus, were not fast enough in adopting to new conditions. It does not mean that there were many college closings; vice a versa, some colleges grew, opened new programs and applied for research grants. These colleges adopted the enterprise thinking (Thelin, 2011, p. 337).
Enterprise thinking, according to Thelin (2011, p.337), is about making strategic planning decisions based on the available data. One can think that by 2015 institutions of higher education would have learned how to utilize the results of ongoing