University Endowments
Their Role in Education and Possibilities for Reform
About This Event

University endowments have grown considerably over the past decade owing to a relatively strong stock market and aggressive investing techniques. With the cost of college skyrocketing, endowments have now come under increased scrutiny from the public and from Congress. Some think that investment gains from university endowments should be used to help offset increasing college costs, but others are skeptical.

Panelists at this event will assess college endowments and discuss the need and implications of possible reform. During the first panel, Charles Miller, chairman of the Commission on the Future of Higher Education--known as the Spellings Commission--and a private investment manager; Donald Frey, an economics professor at Wake Forest University, and AEI’s Richard Vedder, author of Going Broke By Degree: Why College Costs Too Much (AEI Press, 2004), will review the role that college endowments play in higher education and discuss endowment investing strategy. Todd Zywicki, a professor of law at George Mason University and an alumni trustee of Dartmouth College, will moderate. During the second panel, Dean Zerbe, tax counsel for Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa); Terry Hartle, senior vice president of the American Council on Education; and Lynne Munson, an adjunct research fellow at the Center for College Affordability and Productivity will review the possibility of using endowment proceeds to make college more affordable for students and families. Sandy Baum of the College Board will moderate.

9:15 a.m. Registration and Breakfast

9:30 I. University Endowments: An Assessment

Panelists: Donald Frey, Wake Forest University
Charles Miller, Spellings Commission
Richard Vedder, AEI

Moderator: Todd Zywicki, George Mason University School of Law

10:45 II. Endowment Reforms: Necessary or Needless?

Panelists: Dean Zerbe, Office of Senator Charles Grassley (R-Iowa)
Terry Hartle, American Council on Education
Lynne Munson, Center for College Affordability and Productivity

Moderator: Sandy Baum, College Board

12:00 p.m. Adjournment
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