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Weekly Review
October 29, 2021
At AKA, we closely follow trends and latest developments
in higher education and the nonprofit sector.

Here are some recent articles and reports that we found particularly informative.
From Fortune:
Coursera and the uncertain future of higher education
By Arthur Levine
The future of higher education is being led by a publicly traded company in California whose online platform has a portfolio of thousands of courses from the world’s leading universities, corporations, and nonprofits.  Throughout the pandemic, college enrollment saw a steep decline, but Coursera’s enrollment rose from 53 million to 78 million.  These courses cater to part-time, older, and adult learners who are increasingly important to the economy but underserved by higher education. Read this article
From The Atlantic:
College Admissions Are Still Unfair
By James S. Murphy
Amherst College has dropped its preference for enrolling legacy students in favor of a need-blind admissions model. Johns Hopkins, another school that had ended legacy preference, has seen the percentage of enrolled legacies decline from 12.5 to 3.5 percent, while Pell enrollment climbed from 9 to 19 percent. Some argue that offering more grant money will better increase Pell enrollment, but the importance of need-blind admissions cannot be undervalued.  Coupling the shift in admissions policy with increased grant funding, as Amherst did, appears to be the best way to see lasting change. Read this article
From The Economist:
Two new books Explore the Impact of Accelerating Technology
By The Economist
The technological renaissance we are currently living in seemingly has no end in sight. As artificial intelligence and VR simulators shift from science fiction to reality, accelerating technology is leading to exponential growth.  Azeem Azhar’s book, The Exponential Age, and Reid Hoffman’s book, Master of Scale, explore how this exponential growth is unavoidable, and how those who wish to stay relevant must evolve before the developing technology passes them by. Read this article

From Harvard Business Review:
The Case for a Chief of Staff
By Dan Ciampa
A CEO’s chief of staff can play an essential role in streamlining communication, productivity, and organization. Those who have found support through hiring a CoS have reported themselves able to get much more done in a much shorter span of time, enabling them to take on new projects that may otherwise have been impossible.  If a president or another senior executive officer is experiencing concerns about productivity, poor information flow that results in slow decision-making, and too much time spent on back-and-forth and follow-up, a CoS may be the solution. Read this article
Further Reading
From Brookings:
Has COVID disrupted the postsecondary pipeline?
By Lauren Bauer, Veronica Clevenstine, Wendy Edelberg, Elisabeth Raczek, and Winnie Yee
Both the 2001 and 2008 recessions saw young people aged 16-24 returning to school and leaving the work force, but since the COVID-19 pandemic, the reverse has been observed.  Many would-be students have left the classroom in pursuit of the higher wages offered by employers.  Experts worry that by foregoing their postsecondary education, this age cohort will find it difficult to return to the classroom later in life, making future employment for them more challenging. Read this article
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