Campus Employment Stagnates

Colleges have responded to the economic downturn by slowing their rates of hiring, although only in the for-profit sector of higher education is the number of workers actually declining, a new federal study finds.

The report, an annual study by the U.S. Education Department's National Center for Education Statistics, provides data on the number, type and employment status of staff members working in fall 2011 at colleges and universities that qualify to award federal financial aid. (The report also contains information on student financial aid, and another NCES report released Tuesday provides preliminary data on 12-month enrollment and degrees conferred in 2010-11.)

There were 7,398 institutions eligible to award U.S. financial aid in the 2011-12 academic year, 2,039  of which were public, 1,890 private nonprofit, and 3,469 for-profit. The total is up 3.1 percent from 2010-11, with all of that growth coming among for-profit colleges (the number of public and private nonprofit institutions actually declined slightly from 2010-11 to 2011-12).

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