Two things everyone seems to know about higher education are that it's extremely expensive and that it gets more so every year. That, however, is about the extent of our collective certainty, because many critical questions never seem to get answered: Why does tuition rise relentlessly? What are students actually learning? What's the payoff of higher education? In light of all the open questions, it's no surprise that Americans are getting increasingly uneasy about the prices that colleges and universities are asking them to pay.
Last year, the U.S. secretary of education established a commission to inspect America's ivory tower and formulate a "national strategy" for its renovation. With the commission's final report now out, we invite you to join our diverse panel of experts for a lively debate of higher education's problems, and the best ways to fix them- The Cato Institute
Featuring Charles Miller, Chairman, the Secretary of Education's Commission on the Future of Higher Education; Christopher Nelson, President, St. John's College; Anya Kamenetz, Author, Generation Debt; Neal McCluskey, Policy Analyst, Center for Educational Freedom, Cato Institute; and moderated by Doug Lederman, Editor, Inside Higher Ed.
Anya Kamenetz grew up in Baton Rouge and New Orleans, Louisiana. Her father, Rodger Kamenetz, is a poet and the author of The Jew in the Lotus; her mother, Moira Crone, is a novelist.
Since graduating from Yale University in 2002, Anya has lived in Manhattan and freelanced as a fact-checker, copy editor, research assistant, and writer.
Doug Lederman, editor, is one of the three founders of Inside Higher Ed.
With Scott Jaschik, he leads the editorial operations of Inside Higher Ed, overseeing news content, opinion pieces, resources, and interactive features. Doug is among the leading journalists on higher education in the country, speaking widely on the topic, and his work has appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, the Nieman Foundation Journal, The Christian Science Monitor, and the Princeton Alumni Weekly. Doug was managing editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education from 1999 to 2003. Before that, Doug had worked at The Chronicle since 1986 in a variety of roles, first as an athletics reporter and editor.
His work at The Chronicle won two National Awards for Education Reporting from the Education Writers Association.
He began his career as a news clerk at The New York Times. He grew up in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and graduated in 1984 from Princeton University.
Neal McCluskey is a policy analyst with Cato's Center for Educational Freedom. Prior to arriving at Cato, McCluskey served in the U.S. Army, taught high school English, and was a freelance reporter covering municipal government and education in suburban New Jersey.
More recently, he was a policy analyst at the Center for Education Reform, where he published papers on subjects ranging from cyber charter schools to class size reduction. McCluskey's writings have appeared in such publications as the Baltimore Sun, the Washington Times, the Orange County Register, and Forbes, and he has been cited in periodicals ranging from Wired News to U.S. News and World Report. In addition, he has appeared on C-SPAN, CNN, and the Fox News Channel. McCluskey holds a master's degree in political science from Rutgers University.
During a career in investment management, which spanned several decades from the 1960's to the 1990's, Charles Miller was a highly successful portfolio manager, as well as an entrepreneur in the investment management industry. He was an innovator and a pioneer in the era of professional investment management of institutional assets, especially in the area of corporate, public and jointly trusteed pension funds.
He built a large mutual fund company with a wide variety of product lines, including money market, equity and fixed income funds, domestic and foreign, with distribution in all fifty states. In a later period, he developed an investment fund which invested in special situation equities and in recent years he has managed family portfolios.
Christopher B. Nelson
Christopher B. Nelson has been president of St. John's College in Annapolis, Maryland, since June 1991. He is an alumnus of that school (B.A. 1970) and a graduate of the University of Utah College of Law (J.D. 1973), where he founded and directed the university's student legal services program.
He practiced law in Chicago for 18 years and was chairman of his law firm when he left the practice to take his current position at St. John's College.