> defunded higher ed
I am unaware of this. I thought public funding increased over the last decade or so.
Students accepted that they will need huge loans to get an education, and institutions invested in more elaborate amenities (sports arenas, rec facilities, apartment-style dorms, huge athletic budgets) to attract the top students and their loan money.
It's been rising more recently though.
2012-2017 had a 15% increase (20% per student), with only 7% cumulative inflation.
Either way, "defunded higher ed" is exaggerated.
If you have a bunch of colleges go out of business you suddenly have a scenario where degrees from those institutions are either potentially seen as invalid as they can't be verified and/or you have degree mills going "Nnnnnoiiiicccceeee, you want a college degree? Pick from one of these hundred colleges and we will send you aged printed transcripts and a perfect replica of their diploma" and then you suddenly have tens of thousands, or millions, of people with degrees that are fake but can't be proven to be.
Many employers would probably just refuse to acknowledge degrees from those institutions or at least considerably discount their value compared to an applicant that has a degree from a university that hasn't shuttered. Worse, you'd have people still paying for loans for degrees that can't be verified.
1. families had fewer kids after the 2008 recession.
2. Alternative forms of education.
The latter will be good news, if it does displaced old colleges. The former, which is waaay earlier in the article and therefore probably the more important cause (in the opinion of this article) could be swung at any moment by a change in immigration, welfare, or regulatory policies on state (for the latter two) or Federal levels.
I don't see much reason to take this prediction seriously. Are private investments or bonds of some kind in these institutions tanking?
Cost of tution/student/mo = 6hr * 5day * 4 weeks * $50/hr / 20 students = $300
Cost of facilities/student/mo = $600
Cost of room and board/student/mo = $600
So at minimum student will need to bear $18000/yr cost. If college is only receiving fraction of this then it will bankrupt.