Looking at Trends: AIKCU tuition increases in line with national private college average, average tuition remains lower

The College Board released the Trends in College Pricing and Trends in Student Aid 2011 reports yesterday, and they’ve gotten quite a bit of attention throughout the higher education world (see coverage in Inside Higher Ed and The Chronicle, and NAICU President David Warren’s statement on the reports here). The Trends reports confirm what many are already painfully aware of: despite colleges’ efforts to control costs, sticker prices continue to rise faster than inflation in all sectors. However, the increases are most acute in the public sector, largely due to the combination of a weak economy and declining state support.

According to the report, published tuition and fees at public 4-year universities increased by an average of 8% nationwide. (In Kentucky, the increases were not as drastic as the Council on Postsecondary Education capped tuition increases at public 4-yr. institutions at 5% for comprehensives and 6% at the research institutions.) Nationally, private nonprofit college and university tuitions and fees increased by 4.5%, while AIKCU institutions’ sticker prices rose by 4.7%.

The College Board takes great care to explain that most students do not pay these published sticker prices, and the Trends in Student Aidreport details the increasingly important role that student financial aid, in all its forms, plays in helping students and families afford a postsecondary education. At AIKCU institutions, nearly 100% of students receive some form of financial aid.

Kentucky’s independent colleges continue to try and mitigate the effects on students and their families by increasing the institutional resources they dedicate to student financial aid. The most recent data we have from the National Center for Education Statistics (from fiscal 2009) indicates that AIKCU institutions discount tuition by 39% on average, providing their students with more than $180 million in financial aid.

And as the graphic below indicates, AIKCU’s average tuition remains significantly lower than the national and southern regional averages.


Trends in College Pricing 2011

Trends in Student Aid 2011

A Shifting Burden (Inside Higher Ed)

Rise in Sticker Price at Public Colleges Outpaces That at Private Colleges for 5th Year in a Row (The Chronicle of Higher Education)

NAICU statement on Trends in College Pricing and Student Aid Reports


Berea names new president

New Berea president Lyle D. Roelofs

The Berea College Board of Trustees has named Lyle D. Roelofs the ninth president of the college. He will succeed current Berea president Larry Shinn, who previously announced he will retire on June 30, 2012.

Dr. Roelofs comes to Berea with more than 35 years experience in higher education. He currently serves as provost and dean of the faculty (on leave), and professor of physics at Colgate University.

Read the complete story on the presidential announcement on Berea’s news site.

2011 AIKCU Technology Awards – updated with winners

UPDATE: The 2011 winners of were announced last week at the IT Directors meeting and now appear below. Congratulations to the IT staffs from Berea College, University of the Cumberlands, and Campbellsville University, and to all of the nominees. There were some truly outstanding projects and the competition was very close all the way around. 

Each year, AIKCU showcases the outstanding efforts and innovations of our campuses’ Information Technology departments through the AIKCU Technology Awards. These IT folks are innovating to solve campus problems through technology, often with few resources. We salute their efforts and want to congratulate all the nominees. (Watch for winners to be announced soon.)

The award for Best New Campus Application is given to the school that has implemented a major new application or significantly enhanced an existing system that improves operational performance and/or service for all or part of its students, faculty, and staff.

The winners of Best New Campus Application are:

Berea College – New Student Online Orientation and Course Registration System (Berea New Student Online Orientation/Reg. – PDF)

Berea’s new course registration system involved the creation of a web-based, online orientation system that provides entering students with extensive information about the early enrollment process at Berea. It collects and communicates vital information from and to new students. The online orientation experience includes several educational components, transactional web-based processes, and language and mathematics placement testing. At the conclusion of the experience, new students are provided with an online tutorial designed to help them choose courses of interest that will also satisfy academic requirements at Berea. After course preferences are submitted, a sophisticated program written at the College which captures comprehensive curricular information from faculty leaders of academic departments is run to place all students in available, appropriate courses, ensuring that entering students have required courses in their schedules, an introductory course in their primary area of academic interests and elective courses of interest that also serve to meet program requirements.

University of the Cumberlands – EDUCAN (UC EDUCAN – PDF)

EDUCAN is the UC Education department’s artifact management system. This system is designed to integrate with the University’s centralized student information system (SIS) to keep data centralized while allowing the Education department to own their data in a system that appears to be isolated from the SIS. Using this system, the Education department can track and update students’ current and historical personal, program, certification, portfolio, and other information that they track for students. It can also print reports to show raw data as well as aggregates across all populations. The reports use rubrics to create a dashboard for administrators to visually see the current status of our Education department in relation to institutional assessment criteria.

Other nominees for Best New Campus Application included:

Transylvania University – Campus Digital Signage (Transy Digital Signage – PDF)

Transy’s IT staff selected an open source, free signage software package called Concerto to drive digital signage across campus. They installed TV monitors in high traffic locations across campus with a mini-computer attached to the back of each one. The computers retrieve the Concerto signage content wirelessly and display it on the monitor. Each monitor shows a rolling feed of campus news, local weather, time and date and a slideshow of photographs and announcements/flyers.

Union College – PWM Open Source Password Self Service for LDAP directories (Union PWM – PDF)

Students, as well as employees, now have an online web-based solution to enable change and reset of their network password, without the assistance of support desk personnel. This will impact webmail, ERP web portals, and learning management system access, thus potentially reducing support desk calls significantly.

University of Pikeville – Retention Alerts (UPIKE Retention Alerts – PDF)

Retention Alert is an add-on from Datatel for our Colleague system. It seamlessly integrates with Colleague and allows faculty, staff and other students to inform us when a student has problems that could cause them to leave the institution. It tracks and communicates with the appropriate personnel so they may take action(s) to prevent students from leaving.

University of the Cumberlands – Efficient Asset Management System (UC Efficient Asset Management System – PDF)

The computer imaging solution that we have customized for our specific purposes allows us to create a single custom operating system installation on one machine and then save that image to the server. We can then simply allow each machine to boot to the Network Interface Card (NIC) using the Pre-boot Execution Environment (PXE). Through this method, a connection is made to the imaging server and the custom OS is installed automatically. With the EAMS application, UC was able to reduce a process that previously required two to three hours of manual attention per machine to a nearly fully automated process that requires only a few minutes per machine.

University of the Cumberlands – Time and Attendance Automation (UC Time and Attendance – PDF)

The new automated system provides for electronic, biometric time clocks as well as Web-based soft clocks.The time and attendance system seamlessly integrates with the University’s ERP system so the time punches automatically flow into the ERP’s payroll module. Accruals are now automatically centrally managed through the time and attendance system. The HR department has reduced the number of employees devoted to hourly payroll from two fulltime positions to one half of one employee’s responsibilities.

Georgetown College – GC Mobile (Georgetown GCMobile – PDF)

Georgetown’s new mobile site provides mobile web services for student, faculty, and staff hand held devices such as Apple iPhone, iTouch, and Google Android at https://my.georgetowncollege.edu/go. These services provide mobile access to the Georgetown College community in real-time from anywhere, either through the campus wireless network or through 3G services.

The award for Best Student Online Application is given to the school who has demonstrated the spirit of digital use by providing the most efficient, effective, and creative online services to their students.

The 2011 winner of Best Student Online Application is:

Campbellsville University – CASHNet Portal Integration (Campbellsville CASHNet – PDF)

Campbellsville University’s Office of Business Services implemented the CASHNet online payment system for students to use to pay their bills, receive billing statements and notifications of statements electronically, provide parent access to billing statements and receive refunds via direct bank transfer.

Other nominees in the Best Student Online Application category included:

Transylvania University – MOX Mobile Application (Transy MOX Mobile – PDF)

Transy’s IT staff deployed a mobile application for iPhone/iPod, Android and BlackBerry phones and mobile devices. The mobile app, called MOX, links with the university’s enterprise data system in order to provide campus phone numbers, maps to building locations and information. It displays feeds of news articles from the campus website, athletics and alumni websites and Transy’s Twitter account, as well as a campus calendar of events.

University of the Cumberlands – Roommate Student Housing System (UC Roommate Project – PDF)

The Roommate student housing system is an online system that was written by members of the University’s Information Technology staff. With Roommate, students submit their room request form via the MyUC portal and can track the progress of the process through the portal. After the submission deadline, Student Services can add additional criteria into the matching process and click a single button to match the students with the most compatible roommate and the best dorm and room combination for the student. The results are automatically written back to the students’ records in the student information system and the MyUC portal is updated. In MyUC a student can see the contact information of his/her roommate including phone number, email address, and Facebook page.

University of the Cumberlands – UC Website (UC Web Redesign  – PDF)

In January of 2011, University of the Cumberlands launched a new web design after six months of research, redesign, and user input. UC’s new web design boasts graphical improvements and several new features to improve the browsing experience for users. Dynamic content, a larger resolution, and a host of web applications were just a few of the improvements included.

The Most Successful Infrastructure Project award recognizes a campus that has implemented major changes to its technology infrastructure resulting in improved services and/or cost savings. This may include changes to the physical hardware used to interconnect users and computers, server projects, network expansions or changes, desktop hardware changes, etc.

The 2011 Most Successful Infrastructure Project award goes to: 

University of the Cumberlands – UCWireless (UC UCWireless – PDF)

The UCWireless Infrastructure provides complete wireless connectivity for our entire university campus. It is a collective of over 300 indoor and outdoor access points located on the University of the Cumberlands campus. While a secured section of the system provides a seamless wireless experience for UC students, faculty, staff, and administration, guest access is also provided through the same controller.

Other nominees in the Most Successful Infrastructure Project category included:

Transylvania University – PaperCut Print Control (Transy Print Control – PDF)

Transy’s IT staff installed a print control solution called PaperCut in order to manage printing in computer labs and other open areas with printing capabilities. PaperCut provides web based tools that allow a print job to be sent to any printer on the network, shows a user their print count and other statistics, allows you to cancel a print job that you no longer want and supports quotas to be set for the amount of paper that a student can use each semester.

Campbellsville University – Virtualization Initiative (Campbellsville Virtualization Initiative – PDF)

While minimizing outages and user impact, Campbellsville University’s Information Technology department has performed a number of maintenance operations that have resulted in full clustering and failover implementation for our Datacenter operations. This was accomplished without requiring any rebuilding of any virtual machines, and with virtually no unscheduled outages due to the changes. While the clustering of new systems is relatively simple, performing this on in-production systems created unique challenges for our IT staff.

Brescia University – Securing Campus Network Access for an Improved User Experience (Brescia Securing Network 1 – PDF)

The project developed a path for deploying differentiated network access security for student housing, campus and guest networks to meet bandwidth concerns, protect the network from unwanted applications such as malware or peer-to-peer applications, and improve the user logon and connectivity experience.

Brescia University – Securing Campus Network Access for an Improved User Experience (2) (Brescia Securing Network  2 – PDF)

Implementation of a low cost wired and wireless authentication mechanism and network access control system.

Centre College – Watchtower Implementation (Centre Watchtower – PDF)

Implementation of Watchtower, a security status/event correlation framework that provides the current security status of a device on campus based on a modular scoring system,(an ongoing process) has significantly changed how Centre College ITS approaches campus network security. It has greatly helped to lessen the time required to manually correlate data from several systems to identify an issue and provide ITS a more unified view of the security profile of campus.

University of the Cumberlands – Network Infrastructure Expansion Project (UC Network Infrastructure Expansion – PDF)

The goal of the Network Infrastructure Expansion Project at University of the Cumberlands was to create a completely separate network for the residence halls from the administrative network. The rationale for this project is that students’ needs and wants from the campus network are often in conflict with those from faculty and staff. Since both constituent groups are of equal importance, the project was created to relieve stress from the administrative network and provide better service for students in the residence halls.

The Most Innovative Use of Technology for Instructional Purposes award is given to the school that has demonstrated a creative, unique and resourceful use of technology for instructional purposes.

The winner in the Most Innovative Use of Technology for Instructional Purposes category is:

Berea College – BC OnDemand (Berea BC OnDemand – PDF)

The BC-OnDemand system integrates a video portal into our campus infrastructure. The portal contains both live streaming of television channels and live events on campus as well as on demand content produced by our students and faculty. These resources are made available to encourage and present increasing numbers of multimedia projects that are in use throughout several classes.

Also nominated was:

University of the Cumberlands – iLearn Bypass Exams (UC iLearn Bypass Exams – PDF)

Courses have been created in iLearn, the University’s Learning Management System, for departmental bypass exams taken by incoming freshman students. These exams are taken in computer labs around campus and proctored by instructors.


AIKCU alums sweep Kentucky Teacher of the Year awards

Boone County High English teacher Kimberly Shearer, center, an ’01 Georgetown College summa cum laude graduate, is the 2012 Kentucky Teacher of the Year. Elementary School Teacher of the Year Elizabeth Ann Fuller, left, is a Bellarmine University graduate and a 3rd-grade reading and writing demonstration site teacher at J.B. Atkinson Academy in Jefferson County. Middle School Teacher of the Year Jenni Lou Jackson, right, is an 8th-grade language arts teacher at Corbin Middle School and has graduate degrees from Union College. (Photo by Amy Wallot, Kentucky Department of Education.)

Three AIKCU alumni were honored yesterday as Kentucky’s 2012 Teachers of the Year during a ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda. The awards are presented annually by the Kentucky Department of Education and Ashland Inc.

The overall 2012 Kentucky Teacher of the Year is Kimberly Pangburn Shearer, an English teacher at Boone County High School. Shearer is a 2001 summa cum laude graduate of Georgetown College who also holds master’s degrees from Northern Kentucky University and Western Kentucky University.

Elizabeth Ann Fuller is the 2012 Elementary School Teacher of the Year. She is a third-grade reading and writing teacher at Jefferson County’s J.B. Atkinson Academy and obtained her bachelor’s degree at Bellarmine University.

The 2012 Middle School Teacher of the Year is Jenni Lou Jackson, an eighth grade teacher at Corbin Middle School. Jackson holds a master’s and teaching certification from Union College.

These outstanding teachers join a number of previous AIKCU alumni who have been honored as Kentucky Teachers of the Year. Including these 2012 Teacher of the Year honorees, half of the TOY nominees profiled on the Ashland Inc. website hold degrees or certifications from AIKCU institutions.


Ashland Inc. 2012 Kentucky Teachers of the Year (complete profiles of all nominees)

‘O1 GC Grad Named 2012 Teacher of the Year (georgetowncollege.edu)

Education officials name 2012 teachers of the year (kentucky.com)

Official KDE press release


Welcome to the new AIKCU.org

We’ve launched a redesigned AIKCU.org that we hope will be more flexible and allow us to provide better, more relevant content related to Kentucky’s nonprofit private colleges and universities. Our goal is for the site to be a little cleaner, a little fresher, and more useful and responsive to what will most benefit you, our readers. We’re switching from a straight news format to a blog format, to allow us to provide more timely and relevant content, whether news, opinion, or links. Also new is our newsroom, where we will aggregate higher education headlines, tweets from our campuses, and other news sources alongside our latest posts.

We’re still working on migrating over content from the old site and tweaking some of the details, but rather than wait around for the site to be completely finished we’re soft launching now. (Let’s just call this our beta phase.) If you were a frequent visitor to the old site and can’t find something that you’ve come to rely on, shoot me a note and we’ll do what we can to help: mason [dot] dyer [at] aikcu [dot] org. Of course, as always, we value your comments and suggestions.


Kentucky private college enrollments continue to grow, approach 36,000

AIKCU fall enrollment graph

Enrollment at Kentucky’s independent colleges and universities continues to rise, according to recent data from the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education.

The estimated combined total fall headcount enrollment for AIKCU’s 20 member institutions is 35,878. Undergraduate enrollment at AIKCU institutions is up 4 percent over the fall of 2010, and graduate enrollment increased by 7 percent. Total enrollment in the independent sector increased by 45 percent over the last 10 years.

The continued upward trend in independent college enrollment indicates that even in this tight economy, students still find great value in Kentucky’s nonprofit private colleges and universities.

Statewide, CPE reported Kentucky’s total postsecondary enrollment grew 2 percent over fall 2010. Undergraduate enrollment at Kentucky’s public universities grew by 1 percent. Official fall enrollment numbers will be available from CPE in the spring of 2012.

AIKCU fall enrollment graph


Berea College ranked #1, other AIKCU members recognized for contributions to public good by Washington Monthly

Berea College has been ranked the #1 liberal arts college in the country by Washington Monthly magazine. The Washington Monthly rankings are the only college rankings focused exclusively on institutions’ contributions to the public good.

The Washington Monthly rankings are designed to be a “very different perspective on higher education excellence than the one represented by U.S. News.” The rankings focus on three core metrics: social mobility (admitting and graduating low-income students), research and Ph.D. production, and community service.

In addition to Berea College’s #1 ranking in the liberal arts category, other AIKCU institutions recognized by Washington Monthly include: Centre College (38), Lindsey Wilson College (93), and 5 others in the top 200 in the liberal arts category; University of the Cumberlands (27) and four others in the baccalaureate college category; Union College (53) and Bellarmine University (170) in the master’s university category; and Spalding University, ranked 83 among national universities.

The full Washington Monthly rankings are available at http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/college_guide/ where you can search or sort the rankings by state.

See also: Berea College #1 in Washington Monthly’s College Rankings (BCNow)

New study reveals Campbellsville University has over $93 million economic impact in Taylor County

Campbellsville University has an overall economic impact of $93 million in Taylor County, according to a new study completed by national research firm Younger Associates of Jackson, TN. The 2010-11 Economic Impact Study shows that CU has been a stabilizing force in the local economy throughout the recession.

Some highlights from the study:

  • 1 out of every 10 jobs in Taylor County is supported by CU-related operations.
  • CU is responsible for more than $42 million in wages, more than $1.3 million in local tax revenues and 1,258 total jobs (457 direct and 801 indirect) in the local community.
  • Capital spending adds $6 million to the local economy.
  • $33 million in consumer spending in Taylor County is tied to Campbellsville University. Students spend over $17 million in the local economy each year, while total consumer sending by staff, contractors, service providers and vendors totals another $16 million.

To learn more Campbellsville University’s impact on the local economy visit http://www.campbellsville.edu/09092011economicimpact or see the coverage on ColumbiaMagazine.com.

Bellarmine completes final phase of $37.3 million housing project

Bellarmine University was once primarily a commuter campus. Not any longer.  When classes began this August roughly half of the Bellarmine undergraduate student body was living on campus in the heart of Louisville’s Highlands neighborhood, making it a primarily residential university.

Bellarmine recently completed the fourth and final phase in its five-year, $37.3 million Siena Housing Project. Siena Terzo, the new residence facility, cost $11.5 million and features more than 50,000 total square feet, 128 beds, a new outdoor green space, and a 200-seat dining hall.

See more on the project, including additional photos and video, on Bellarmine.edu


Lindsey Wilson grad returns to alma mater as biology professor

Lindsey Wilson Asst. Professor of Biology Laura Wheat Nissley (LWC '06) and lab assistant, Skinny (wearing her lab coat from the University of Louisville). While she's not the first alum to teach at Lindsey Wilson, Nissley is the first Lindsey Wilson graduate to earn a doctorate in science and join the faculty full-time.

When classes opened last week at Lindsey Wilson College last week, Laura Wheat Nissley finally got a chance to experience LWC’s Jim and Helen Fugitte Science Center. The Fugitte Center opened just months three months after she graduated in May of 2006. After earning her doctorate studying physiology and biophysics at the University of Louisville, Nissley started this fall semester as one of 18 new faculty at Lindsey Wilson.

Nissley describes coming back to Lindsey Wilson as “meant to be:”

During her five years as a UofL graduate student, Nissley realized that she wanted to become a college professor. So she began to “stalk the Lindsey Wilson website” for job openings. Shortly after finishing her doctoral work, she was hired by LWC in early summer.

“It was just like a miracle,” Nissley said. “I had been stalking the Lindsey Wilson website. When the job was posted, I was all over it. I said, This is a miracle, it’s meant to be.”

Read the full story about Professor Laura Nissley and her first days back on campus on the Lindsey Wilson College website.