Skip to content Menu

NACUBO's State of Higher Education series asks stakeholders to consider some of the higher education sector’s more pressing issues and to take actions to preserve and enhance the value of a postsecondary degree.



 Title: Top 5 Higher Education Business Issues of 2023

Top Five Higher Education Issues of 2023

For the second year in a row, NACUBO surveyed its members on the top business issues facing colleges and universities now.  

With input from business officers from public and private colleges and universities across the country, NACUBO has identified the following as the most-pressing business issues in 2023:

  1. Supporting and Maintaining the Workforce
  2. Ensuring Successful Student Outcomes
  3. Securing and Modernizing Technology Systems
  4. Navigating Affordability and Enrollment Management
  5. Meeting Physical Infrastructure Needs

 Learn More »


More Is Possible With Higher Education

Use this new slide deck to tell the story about the immense value colleges and universities deliver to students, communities, and society.

 Learn More »





Top 5 Higher Education Business Issues of 2022

Through focus groups and a survey, NACUBO members identified the top five business issues facing colleges and universities in 2022:

  • Supporting and Maintaining the Workforce
  • Meeting Students’ Evolving Needs
  • Providing a Secure and Modern Technology Infrastructure
  • Managing an Uncertain Economic Climate
  • Navigating Resource Constraints

These issues—listed in no particular order—demonstrate the current financial and planning challenges confronting higher education and shed light on how college and university leaders can guide their institutions through necessary transformation.

Learn More »


Rethinking the Higher Education Workplace in an Era of Transformation

The COVID-19 pandemic has had dramatic effects on the nation’s workforce. To meet new challenges, NACUBO's latest installment in its State of Higher Education series calls for a focus on valuing people, investing in training, and welcoming cultural innovation. 

Learn More »


How to more effectively support students from low-income backgrounds.

Bold Action Required: How to More Effectively Support Students From Low-Income Backgrounds

The latest edition in the series considers higher education access and opportunities for students from low-income backgrounds. Colleges and universities can serve as engines of social mobility—but, to do so, leaders and policymakers must understand who these students are and what barriers they face. #highered21

Read the Medium article »

Download slides »


The emergence of COVID-19 unimaginably altered the higher education landscape in the United States, and the tragic events and racial unrest in 2020 necessitated serious reflection on higher education's role in systemic racism. #highered20

The value of higher education through a COVID-19 lens.

The Value of Higher Education Through a COVID-19 Lens

Across college campuses, trustees, administrators, faculty, staff, and students have sought safe and sustainable paths forward to fulfill their institutions’ missions—and they are doing so because postsecondary training, education, and the pursuit of knowledge remain sound aspirations in the face of so much uncertainty.

Read the Medium article »

Download slides »

Racial disparities in U.S. higher education.


Confronting the Need to Address Racial Disparities in U.S. Higher Education

Higher education in the U.S. is not immune from American systemic racism. Many studies illustrate that current college and university policies and practices perpetuate it, and institutions and their business officers must work to increase equity for students and staff.

 Read the Medium article »

Download slides »





The current state of higher education.

Perceptions and Priorities

In our debut of this work, NACUBO sought to help bridge the seemingly disconnected discussions policymakers and the general public were having about student loan debt, college costs, and free college with the strategic conversations administrators and trustees are having about revenue demands, business models, and what it takes to deliver on educational demands.

Read more »


About the State of Higher Education Series

NACUBO's goal with this scope of work is to improve the national conversation around higher education. Through articles, conversations, and other avenues, NACUBO asks stakeholders to spend time considering the role of higher education in society, the pressures facing the sector, and actionable steps administrators and policymakers can take to preserve and enhance the value of a postsecondary degree.

We are supporting our observations with data on the current state of affairs in formats we hope you will use to continue the conversation in your community. A handful of slides illustrate the same concept in different ways, allowing users to tailor their presentations to their audiences.

The series was initiated as a part of NACUBO's 2019 Strategic Blueprint.

  Read and share all of the Series briefs at


Liz Clark

Vice President, Policy and Research


Related Content

The Solutions Exchange

Ideas and Strategies for Higher Education Finance and Administrative Leaders.

NACUBO Statement on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Investing in the Power of People


NACUBO understands the external forces impacting your institution and day-to-day operations. Our seasoned consultants know how to navigate a campus environment and work with key stakeholders to develop achievable implementation plans.