This week’s episode of The Key explores one university’s plan to shrink its physical footprint and how college leaders are thinking about the role of their campuses going forward.

The COVID-19 pandemic forced almost every college or university to make do without a physical campus at some point in the last 15 months. But many students and employees yearned to return, and most institutions anticipate resuming at least quasi-normal in-person operations this fall. But changes in how students learn and employees work will almost certainly compel most colleges and universities to reassess how they use their physical campuses – one of the many ways institutions may rethink how they best fulfill their missions.

This episode of The Key podcast examines that landscape by looking at the University of Akron’s decision to sell, repurpose or otherwise shed nearly 1 million square feet of the land and buildings it owns – about one-eighth of its total holdings. Nathan Mortimer, vice president of operations at Akron, discusses the university’s evolving strategy. Lander Medlin, executive vice president of APPA: Leadership in Educational Facilities, offers a national perspective on the analysis college leaders are doing to assess their own situations. And Tomas Rossant and Alex O’Briant of Ennead Architects share their insights on the continuing importance of the physical campus and the link between mission and place.

Hosted by Inside Higher Ed co-founder and editor Doug Lederman.

This episode is sponsored by Wiley Education Services.

 

Episode Transcript

 

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