Businesses — whether large or small, or whether they are healthcare, educational cultural or recreational institutions — all have been tragically affected by COVID-19. For colleges and universities, the beginning of the fall semester will be especially challenging.
Even prior to the onset of the coronavirus, many universities and colleges were confronted with dire challenges, particularly enrollment declines (down for the ninth year in a row and more than 2 million this decade); rising operating costs; and competition from less expensive, online, for-profit educational vendors. Almost 60 institutions of higher learning — public and private non-profit — have gone out of business or merged over the past four years. Urban universities, such as FIU, are projected to fare better because of its neighboring population and affordable tuition. Those most vulnerable for the next round of closings and mergers are small, church-related institutions where private tuition invariably exceeds that of nearby