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Change is coming to higher education

June 14, 2016 12:00 PM
Mary Ann Travis
Richard Matasar has written about changes in higher education for two decades. Syracuse Law Review presents responses to his work by law professors and deans around the country. Matasar is senior vice president of strategic initiatives and institutional effectiveness at Tulane University. (Photo by Paula Burch-Celentano)


More change is on the way in higher education. That’s the message and the prediction of Richard Matasar, Tulane University senior vice president for strategic initiatives and institutional effectiveness.

It may be no surprise for those in the Tulane community who work with Matasar to hear his theme of change. He expounds it often.

What people may not know is that the Syracuse Law Review organized an entire symposium on Matasar’s writings and thought processes about the future of legal and higher education. It’s a topic that Matasar has been writing about for two decades.

“The era of change in higher education is just beginning.”

Richard Matasar

The June 2016, vol. 66, no. 3, issue of the Syracuse Law Review includes a specially organized book with a transcript of the symposium along with more than a dozen essays by law school deans and professors around the country, all writing in response to Matasar’s scholarly work on where legal and higher education is going.

The book also includes an article by Matasar, “Higher Education Evolved: Becoming the University of Value.”  In his piece, Matasar suggests that schools must be able to answer doubters who ask: “Is higher education worth its costs?”

He explains that college student applicants and their parents are “now acutely aware of the return on their investment” and that schools must have a clear vision of what they do that is distinctly valuable.

He lays out proposals for how a university can become a University of Value. That’s the term he coined for institutions of higher learning that provide such great value that students and their families understand “that what they receive is worth what they are charged.”

“The era of change in higher education is just beginning,” writes Matasar. “Whatever these changes may bring, I believe in one constant: we must seek and provide value to those we serve.”

An electronic version of the journal will be available on the Syracuse Law Review website on Wednesday (June 15).