For-Profit Higher Education and Community Colleges
The recent growth of for-profit educational providers has been one of the most watched trends in higher education (Blumenstyk, 2000; Burd, 1998; Selingo, 1999; Strosnider, 1998). Despite the widespread attention, surprisingly little concrete information exists about the for-profit phenomenon. Although the for-profit sector is not the only source of new competition in higher education, the highly publicized growth of some for-profit institutions has generated increasing anxiety among both private non-profit and public colleges and universities. To develop a better understanding of how these institutions compare to public community colleges with respect to their students and programs, the Community College Research Center joined with the National Center for Postsecondary Improvement (NCPI) to conduct a two-year study. The objective was to determine whether these two types of institutions are competitive or complementary and how community colleges have responded to the growth of the for-profits.
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