Professors and administrators at traditional colleges don’t have much interest in, or knowledge of, their for-profit competitors. Operating in an insular academic world, most of them probably don’t know anybody who has attended one.
But for-profit colleges now enroll close to 10 percent of the college population. And if industry projections are correct, for-profits will threaten the pleasant sinecures enjoyed by faculty and administrators at traditional colleges and universities throughout the country.
For-profits are, inevitably, very different sorts of enterprises from their traditional counterparts. They make money. If they don’t, they go out of business. Many are publicly traded, and they have