July 11, 2011
The Middle Class Is Being Priced Out of American Universities
By Roger Shuler
Cross Posted at Legal Schnauzer

One of the great myths of American life is that universities are bastions of liberal thinking. I worked at a university for 19 years, and I know the unfortunate truth about many campuses: They are run by boards that tend to be populated by corporate elites.

That’s why a recent report from CNNMoney, spotlighted by Mark Karlin of BuzzFlash/Truthout, grabbed my attention. It’s premise? Medium- and low-income families are in danger of being priced out of the college-education market.

I already can hear the Rush Limbaugh crowd saying, “But everybody knows universities are run by pointy-headed liberals.” The American professorate, indeed, probably leans to the political left. But anyone who has spent much time at a public university knows professors have little power on campuses. The places are run by boards of trustees and curators, filled with folks who usually come from corporate America. And they tend to hire presidents, vice presidents, provosts, and deans who think like they do–or who at least are willing to do their bidding.

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