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Among the greatest concerns regarding higher education are their budgets. With diminishing appropriations from state governments for public institutions, and decreasing enrollments affecting not only state but also private institutions, we see policies of slash and burn. Entire academic programs have been eliminated, which has oftentimes led to a loss of jobs. Yet a number of other programs that have nothing to do with the main mission of colleges and universities – education – seem to be untouchable. The most prominent example is athletics. It is interesting that big sports programs are a feature unique to the American higher education system. In other parts of the world, particularly in Europe and Asia, athletic programs are confined to little more than intramural activities, which represent a minuscule part of their budgets. The question is, could we really save significant amounts of money but eliminating big time sports on campuses?


This work was originally published in The Edwardsville Intelligencer.



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