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USA Funds Awards Grant for Mississippi College-Planning Web Site

USA Funds® awards an $80,000 grant to develop a Web site to help Mississippi middle- and high-school students and their parents prepare for, apply to and pay for postsecondary-education programs.

The Web site will serve as a comprehensive clearinghouse of information specific to education on both a state and national level. Although middle-and high-school students and their parents are the primary target audience, the site also will offer information for school counselors, elementary-school students, college students and adult learners.

In conjunction with the Web site, the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning will distribute to eighth-grade students in the state binders containing information about the college-preparatory curriculum, university admissions, planning for a postsecondary education and financial aid. The binders and the Web site will complement and promote each other. (COMMENTARY: maybe they should have just created a mySpace account to get the word out—it would be FREE and they would have access to a majority of their target audience! In addition they could target their parents another way but encourage them to go to the mySpace website—this way they would actually see what their children are doing online.)

A recent research report, “Mississippi’s Mandate,” which was underwritten by USA Funds, disclosed that Mississippi could dramatically reduce social- welfare costs and significantly improve its economy and overall quality of life by enhancing access to higher education.

Headquartered in Indianapolis, USA Funds is a nonprofit corporation that works to enhance postsecondary-education preparedness, access and success by providing and supporting financial and other valued services. USA Funds annually guarantees education loans totaling $20.5 billion for students and parents throughout the nation and serves as the designated guarantor of federal education loans for eight states: Arizona, Hawaii and the Pacific Islands, Indiana, Kansas, Maryland, Mississippi, Nevada and Wyoming. USA Funds also invests $18 million annually in scholarships and outreach programs that advance its mission of support to higher education. (COMMENTARY: if we had more affordable education then parents/students wouldn’t have to take out loans to pay for something we SHOULD be able to provide free to every student who wants to attend or at least at an affordable cost.)

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Tracking the Success of Private-for Profit Educational Institutions

This is the first of many posts about private-for-profit educational institutions and their strategic moves. Strayer a private-for-profit organization recently released their financial results for the past three months—the highlights are listed below:

    • Revenues for the three months ended June 30, 2006 increased 19% to $65.6 million, compared to $55.2 million for the same period in 2005, due to increased enrollment and a 5% tuition increase which commenced in January 2006.
    • Income from operations was $21.5 million compared to $19.5 million for the same period in 2005, an increase of 10%.
    • Net income was $14.0 million compared to $12.5 million for the same period in 2005, an increase of 12%.

Student Enrollment
Enrollment at Strayer University for the 2006 summer term increased 15% to 23,932 students compared to 20,757 for the same term in 2005. For the 2006 summer term, Strayer University’s rate of growth of new students was 15%, and its rate of growth of continuing students was also 15%. Out-of-area online students increased 24% while students taking 100% of their classes at Strayer University Online (including campus based students) increased 21%. The total number of students taking any courses online (including students at brick and mortar campuses taking at least one online course) in the 2006 summer term increased 20% to 17,015.

Related Links

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