The last several years have been tumultuous for many colleges in the United States, as undergraduate enrollments have declined, endowments have shrunk and many private institutions have become increasingly dependent on tuition for survival. Now, many in higher education fear that the unprecedented combination of difficulties presented by the coronavirus pandemic could sound a death knell. “The pandemic has upended almost every aspect of our operations, from teaching and student life to research to athletics to admissions and recruitment to the financial model that sustains all of it,” Michael Schoenfeld, Vice President for Public Affairs and Government Relations, and Chief Communications Officer for Duke University, tells CBS News.  “This is all happening in real-time, so it will be a while before we can fully assess the impact across the institution, and indeed across higher education. In the short term, we are evaluating a range of options with regard to the coming academic year, which will depend on both health and public policy considerations. We are also looking at the long-term effects and opportunities, which will be considerable as well.” A staggering 6.6 million Americans sought jobless benefits last week, meaning that roughly 10% of the country is now unemployed. Oxford Economics


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