What are the racial consequences of underfunding public universities? What are “new universities” and how is their focus on underserved student populations transforming U.S. higher education? What is “postsecondary racial neoliberalism” and how does the term capture key facets of the extant crisis in public higher education? How does the “culture of austerity” in U.S. public higher education delimit choices for administration and staff? Why do public universities often support trite models of diversity?

We explore these questions and more with Laura Hamilton and Kelly Nielsen the author’s of Broke: The Racial Consequences of Underfunding Public Universities. Hamilton is Professor and Chair of Sociology at University of California Merced. She co-authored Paying for the Party: How College Maintains Inequality (2013) with Elizabeth A. Armstrong, and authored Parenting to a Degree: How Family Matters for College and Beyond (2016). Kelly Nielsen is a Senior Research Analyst at the University of  San Diego Extension Center for Research and Evaluation. He is the author of numerous articles, including “Fake It ‘Til You Make it’: Why Community College Students’ Aspirations ‘Hold Steady,'” and, “Beyond ‘Warming Up’ and ‘Cooling Out’: The Effects of Community College on a Diverse Group of Disadvantaged Young Women.”