U.S. News article on Aspen

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Abner, Aug 10, 2010.

  1. SurfDoctor

    SurfDoctor Moderator Staff Member

    Wow, I opened a can of worms with my casual comment. I did not actually think that the article was an ad, mostly because it appeared in US News &WR. They don't do the deceptive ads that are disguised to look like articles. You see those on Yahoo news a lot, but not in USN&WR.

    Plus, I believe all those great things they said about Aspen.
  2. b4cz28

    b4cz28 New Member

    MO time to put the can opener away...lol
  3. dlady

    dlady Active Member

    I was not going to respond to this, but it bugs me a little, so even though responding is probably a bad idea, here is my answer:

    Look at it this way, 18 months ago, I was working for myself, and in all honesty, between nine years at Marriott as a division CTO and 18 months billing for my own consulting company, I have done fine. Not I can retire fine, but I am not living pay-check to pay-check either.

    A little over a year ago, I am posting on degreeinfo.com, arguing that DL is fine, just completed a DBA, and feel like I know a little about what is going on in the education space. Then, I get the chance to be President of an accredited online university. Seriously, how often does a chance like that come along? For many people never. I am ridiculously lucky, right?

    So what am I going to do, sit back and pat myself on the back and go to cocktail parties? Not in my DNA. I’m going to make the most out of this that I can.

    Remember, I went to Aspen and have a couple degrees from here that I got long before there was any concept that I would be working here. I am a good karma kind of person. I’m lucky, I want to make Aspen as available as possible to reciprocate that luck. The fact that it is already an incredibly efficient operation with a great board of directors, terrific faculty, a phenomenal learning model, and great staff just means it is a fun place to work and can scale. Education can be a feel-good industry if done correctly. Why raise tuition when I can lower it and still be a viable school? I take a ridiculously small salary to work here because I want to. How great is it in life to get to do what you want instead of what you have to?

    I had to bury my kid brother to get here, move my family, and so on. I’ll turn this around, if given the same incredibly lucky breaks that I got, are you saying you would do something different?
  4. simon

    simon New Member

    I appreciate your response. However, my question had nothing to do with your personal motives or to make anyone defensive but with the ability of a school to sustain itself financially with such low tuitions considering the high costs to maintain a distance education school in financially solvent status.
  5. Petedude

    Petedude New Member

    Don't get me started about what passes for journalism anymore. :: sigh ::

    While I have not read the article as of the moment I post this initially, I can say that as a casual armchair student of journalism I have been sorely disappointed in the sheer lack of objectivity that passes in anything even remotely approaching "news media" anymore. While we all know that no one can completely put aside their biases, ideally "journalists" should at least strive to do so. Formerly respectable news weeklies such as Time, US News, etc. seem to make no effort to hide their respective political bent, for example.

    And I have no qualms about Aspen in this situation, just about journalism in general. Y'all got me on my soapbox. Thanks in advance if you can forgive the momentary thread hijack.

  6. rickyjo

    rickyjo New Member

    Great article! I'm so happy this fine school got some publicity. Aspen is on the forefront of DL and this recognition from such a highly esteemed source will surely have a desirable effect. I am thrilled, and you should be too :).

    As for our little controversy I don't think the point of the article was the school itself, it was the fact that online education is progressing and here's a school that is accredited and respected that will get you an MBA for $3600?! It's not addressing a controversy, it's disseminating rare information on DL and an example school for the cash strapped. Also, who can expect an article this brief to address a controversy? I think it's great.

    @DLady, I had no idea you worked for Aspen! Congrats. What a fulfilling job that must be! You are changing a lot of lives for the better.
  7. SurfDoctor

    SurfDoctor Moderator Staff Member

    It is incredibly great, and also extremely rare! You are blessed and I applaud the fact that you are attempting to give back.

    Plus, there is nothing wrong with the business model involved. Lower price and higher volume endeavors can be very successful. I believe that online classes allow many schools to increase volume without increasing costs and without decreasing educational quality.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 10, 2010
  8. StefanM

    StefanM New Member

    IMO, research papers should be more opinionated than journalistic articles. Reporting the facts is different from synthesizing information.

    Regardless, consider the statement, "Adults who wish to return to school should not be inhibited by the cost of tuition."

    That's strictly an opinion. It is based not on facts or events but is editorializing. There is a place for editorial commentary in journalism, but that place is not in a general news article.
  9. StefanM

    StefanM New Member

    It could be more objective by removing editorial comments.

    And, strictly speaking, nothing is truly objective, but one should strive to keep subjectivity to a minimum in news articles.
  10. Petedude

    Petedude New Member

    I'm not dlady, but let me venture a guess:

    For a short term promotion, a distance learning institution can take a slight loss on one program's tuition by allocating surplus from other programs towards overall cost.

    Sound about right to business admin/public admin degree holders lurking here?
  11. simon

    simon New Member

    Who said or implied that there was anything "...wrong with the business model involved"? What was sought was how can an online school thrive/survive financially with such low tuitions? I understand that by attracting more students to their programs compensates for low tuition but a school would need a HUGH amount of volume to reach a profitable level on par with distance online schools that charge anywhere from $295-$975 a credit for their courses.

    BTW, please provide us with the names of other online schools that maintain similar low tuitions, as you note above.
  12. heimer

    heimer New Member

    My two cents, being in the PR arena, this story is a copy-and-paste from an Aspen press release, not an advertorial, nothing deceptive. Chalk it up to a lazy editor. And I say, good for Aspen!
  13. Tireman 44444

    Tireman 44444 Well-Known Member

    I agree. Give him so justice due so to speak. Let us see what happens. Dave knows what he is doing. Radical for education, if you think about it.
  14. SurfDoctor

    SurfDoctor Moderator Staff Member

    That post was not intended to debate anything you said. I have no data on schools applying a price/volume business model because I don't think there is any data. The business world is replete with examples of this, but I think Aspen might be the first to apply the high-quality/low-cost principle to the business of education.

    We all know that DL is much less expensive to implement, (which is why UoP is raking in the bucks) so this might work for Aspen because there might be headroom to draw from. Without knowing his true motives, it appears that Dr. Lady in not attempting to make a huge profit in the short run. With 25 years of small business experience upon which to draw my conclusion, I think Dr. Lady might be on to something here.

    I'm not sure any of us have experience in financially managing a school, if you actually do have that experience, then I bow to your greater knowledge and abjure my statement.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 10, 2010
  15. Abner

    Abner Well-Known Member

    Why should Dr. Lady respond to an asshole like you? He doesn't owe you any explanations. Has it occured to you that some people really want to help humanity?

  16. Abner

    Abner Well-Known Member

    Thank you!!!!! What he said.

    What hell?

  17. b4cz28

    b4cz28 New Member

    Dude you need to chill......Let's all be friends!
  18. ShotoJuku

    ShotoJuku New Member

    Nice Article - Go Avalanche!!
  19. SurfDoctor

    SurfDoctor Moderator Staff Member

    I have created a new theorem. We all know the Pythagorean Theorem: A2 + B2 = C2

    Here is my new Oliverian Theorem: DETC + DegreeInfo = War

    What do you think? Could I have this published? :)
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 10, 2010
  20. b4cz28

    b4cz28 New Member

    I'm sure someone would buy that off you....

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