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Higher Education Financial Health Focus of Bookend Lecture

(Posted November 8, 2010)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Dominick Peruso, associate professor of accounting, will be giving a Bookend Lecture at 4:30 p.m., Nov. 17 in Neff Lecture Hall in the Von Liebig Center for Science. on the Juniata campus. Peruso's lecture will focus on the current financial model in use by private colleges and sustainability in the current economy.

The event is free and open to the public. The Bookend Lecture series features afternoon lectures each month by Juniata College faculty.

Peruso's lecture aims a spotlight on the current financial model used by private colleges, which centers on a rapid increase in tuition rates then discounting accordingly.

Private colleges, in an attempt to stay competitive, are increasingly making decisions to create new and grandiose student centers, athletic facilities, and improved academic buildings. However, Peruso says the credit crisis is making it increasingly difficult for colleges to receive loans. But with the economic slump, the credit market crisis, and increased competition it begs the question; is that model sustainable?

Peruso will discuss where institutions of higher education are now and what private colleges should be doing to adapt to what is proving to be a new and difficult environment.

Up until now there has been very little research conducted on the financial condition of colleges. Usually people do not look much further than the annual revenues and expenses of private colleges or as Peruso points out, non-profits in general.

Peruso's lecture is related to his research used in his dissertation for the doctoral degree he is seeking in higher education at Penn State University. Peruso received a bachelor's degree in management and accounting from St. Francis College (now University) and completed his master's degree in higher education at Penn State University.

Written by: Caitlin Bigelow


Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.