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The Solutions Exchange

Ideas and Strategies for Higher Education Finance and Administrative Leaders

The Solutions Exchange is a resource center that explores ideas and strategies with action-based results in mind.

The global health pandemic has undoubtedly changed our world, and in an effort to respond in a rapid and thoughtful manner, this website offers timely responses to the current challenges facing our campuses today.

Videos, articles, white papers, podcasts, and webcasts address emerging issues in higher education finance and administration. The website will be updated frequently and will cover topics such as accounting, finance, planning and budgeting, endowment and debt management, energy and efficiency, facilities, leadership, campus operations, and other business areas of colleges and universities.

Many resources are based on experiences of higher education senior administrators and include research and practical tools that can be applied in enhancing the effectiveness of small institutions, community colleges, comprehensive/doctoral institutions, and research universities.

Note: While NACUBO is no longer producing Business Officer magazine articles, they are available on this website.

Digital Downloads

Discover insights and trends on a wide-range of topics related to the campus business office.
White papers, checklists, and resources provide key takeaways that are results-oriented and solutions driven.

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The NACUBO Endowment Study A 50-Year Retrospective

The 2023 NACUBO-Commonfund Study of Endowments is the fiftieth anniversary of NACUBO's Study of endowments at institutions of higher learning.

This special retrospective takes a look at a select number of developments that have changed the course of endowment management since 1974.

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2023 Student Financial Experience

The fourth annual report suggests a positive future for higher education, emphasizing the importance of trust and simplicity in student experience.

By prioritizing trust and simplicity, institutions can improve student retention, graduation rates, and alumni satisfaction.

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The Overlooked Metric for Higher Education Financial Success Volatility

Institutions rely on various sources of funding for their expenses, but the future is inherently uncertain and volatile.

Learn the importance of implementing a long-range planning process.

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Path to Sustainability

NACUBO and Baker Tilly have partnered to consider ways Regional Public Universities can focus their efforts that will support a pathway to sustainability.

This workbook has been designed in its entirety or by tool to focus an institution’s efforts.

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Not Set in Stone: Strategies to Break Down Data Silos and Increase Analytics ROI

Findings from a study with Amazon Web Services are shared in this paper along with tactical recommendations for higher education leaders who are working to advance the use of data and analytics.

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Great Hospitality is Great Business

Beyond "just" dining, this white paper examines how the campus dining and hospitality program can be a vehicle for students to engage with each other and their university.

Learn more about how a great hospitality program can increase both student satisfaction and drive incremental financial returns.

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Rethinking the Framework for Collaboration

This draft framework, developed by NACUBO, APPA, and Gordian, reimagines the framework for collaboration among business, facilities, and planning communities. A link to provide feedback is included.

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Strategic Decision Support for Financial Planning and Sustainability in Higher Education

Learn how to bring data-informed strategies into the financial-planning process. By using data, the resulting decisions will resonate with each institution’s mission and capacity, making it more sustainable, targeted, and effective over the long term.

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How Higher Education Institutions Can Best Leverage Debt As A Strategic Tool

EY-Parthenon’s joint study with NACUBO found that decisions about debt are often made primarily on the basis of financial metrics that indicate if an institution can take on further debt without sufficient attention paid to whether it should.

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OneStream Success Story - State University

Gain both a reduction in the amount of time to complete budgets, and significant performance gains in query and reporting times with this comprehensive software.

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5 Best Practices for Overcoming Higher Ed Budget Season Challenges

With the right strategies in place, it’s possible not only to shorten the budget process, but also to make better and more accurate planning decisions.

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New Resource for Finding Right-Fit Vendor Providers

Identifying, evaluating and selecting vendor partner companies that fit a given institution’s needs is a challenging undertaking. This directory aims to improve things.

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Payment Plans Case Study—Long Island University

This case study explores how Long Island University implemented a new electronic payment solution that helped improve retention and provided them with the flexibility they needed during COVID-19.

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Transforming Complex Financial Aid Processes

Institutions must ensure their financial aid processes are smooth, easy to understand, and centered around students. Explore six tips to keep in mind when revisiting the financial aid process.

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Business Officers and Internal Auditors: An Important Team

A robust and productive relationship between business officers and internal auditors can effectively address issues and risk.

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The Value of Transfer Agreements

One potentially underutilized tool worth deploying is transfer agreements with other institutions. Consider revising or adding such agreements to your repertoire.

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Video Series Exploring Higher Education Leadership With a COVID-19 Lens

NACUBO and Huron have collaborated to develop a complimentary video series: An Intensified Focus on Advancing Resiliency, Managing Risks, and Transforming. The series features interviews with higher education and financial leaders from a wide variety of institutions. Tune in today!

An Intensified Focus on Advancing Resiliency, Managing Risks, and Transforming

Colleges and universities will need to do things differently to not only endure the current crisis created by the COVID-19 global pandemic, but also emerge stronger and better prepared to navigate an evolving landscape and competitive environment.

Watch these complimentary videos and hear their perspectives on how they continue to plan for transformation while addressing the unique challenges presented by the pandemic.

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This video series is brought to you in partnership with Huron


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10 Questions With NACUBO Board Chair Russ Hannah

Hear from the NACUBO Board leader about his career, advice, and goals for the association in the year ahead.

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Navigating the Post-Pandemic Workforce

Read about Heather E. McGowan, a future of work strategist, as she shares lessons on how organizations should rethink their business structures and models amid changing markets.

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Trends in Institutional Financial Aid at U.S. Public Colleges and Universities

Despite increasing institutional financial aid, enrollment of full-time, first-time students has remained flat on average at public college and universities.

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Delivering on the American Education Dream

Putting high-quality credentials within reach of more Americans will require innovation and a commitment to flexibility and equity.

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The Need for Diversity in Investments

This interview with Celena Aponte of the Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center discusses some of the barriers to, and ultimate benefits from, increasing diversity in investments and fund managers.

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Closing the Equity Gap

COVID-19 shines an even brighter light on the racial and systemic rifts that exist in education and throughout society.

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Remote Access

Prior to COVID-19, The University of Texas at San Antonio cleared the logistical hurdles of teleworking to improve space usage and employee retention. That served the university especially well once the pandemic hit.

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Roadmap for Renewal

Explore Stevens Institute of Technology's strategic planning process and discover how the plan has served as a bulwark to help mitigate impacts of COVID-19.

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Podcasts and Webcasts

Tune in to our award-winning podcast series or watch a webcast to stay up-to-date on current trends in the industry.

CBO Speaks

What does it take to be a CBO at today's colleges and universities? What news and updates do they need to know to stay current? Hear thought leaders and experts explore issues and topics about the CBO role and what's in store for the future in this award-winning, interview-style podcast series.



What economic trends today will set the stage for the future? How will legislative actions impact student financial aid? Hear colleagues, experts, and industry leaders explore issues, provide best practices, and offer solutions to issues in higher education.


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Earlier White Papers from NACUBO

Members Only

The Perspectives series are white papers authored by thought leaders, offering points of view on critical and emerging issues in higher education. The series was designed to explore new and emergent concepts or revisit foundational works in ways that help readers reframe or retool their thinking about higher education policy and practice.

The CFO Perspectives series offers insights into the financial operations of a particular institution type. Written by experienced CFOs these papers may prove especially helpful to new CFOs or board members, presidents, senior administrators, faculty or staff.

Published online by NACUBO and available free of charge to members, these occasional series cover key topics and issues that will resonate with NACUBO members for years to come.

Login using your NACUBO credentials to access these papers and reports.

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