Faculty Member

Dr. Kevin R. McClure

Associate Professor of Higher Education

Department of Educational Leadership

EB 382



Dr. Kevin R. McClure is an Associate Professor of Higher Education in the Department of Educational Leadership in the Watson College of Education.

Dr. McClure is an expert in higher education finance, administration, management, and leadership. He researches topics related to college affordability, privatization, college presidents, student housing, and regional public universities. He typically teaches courses in organization and governance, law and policy, history, and finance.

Dr. McClure’s research can be found in print or forthcoming in the Journal of Higher Education, Research in Higher Education, Journal of Student Affairs Research and PracticeJournal of Student Financial Aid, Journal of Higher Education Policy & Management, Philanthropy & Education, Innovative Higher Education, Policy Futures in Education, Academe, International Journal of Educational Development, Journal of Research in Rural Education, and Compare: A Journal of International and Comparative Education.

Dr. McClure is co-editing an upcoming volume of New Directions for Higher Education on regional public universities and co-editing a book under contract with Routledge, titled Unlocking Opportunity through Broadly Accessible Institutions. He is also co-PI on a grant funded by the Joyce Foundation examining federal policy interventions to support broadly accessible rural-serving institutions.

Dr. McClure is an active proponent of public scholarship. A regular blogger, he has authored opinion and advice pieces for popular outlets like The Chronicle of Higher Education, The Conversation, and EdSurge. He is also frequently asked by a variety of national and local news outlets to comment on current issues in higher education. Dr. McClure is also deeply involved in faculty leadership and shared governance on campus, serving on several committees connected to Faculty Senate.

Dr. McClure earned both his M.A. and Ph.D. in International Education Policy from the University of Maryland, College Park. He earned his B.A. in History and Spanish from the University of Richmond. Prior to joining the department, Dr. McClure held professional positions in academic affairs and international programs at the University of Maryland, College Park. He is active and in several professional organizations, including the Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE) and American Educational Research Association (AERA).

Courses Taught

Master’s Level
EDL 550: Foundations of Higher Education
EDL 555: Legal and Policy Issues in Higher Education
EDL 595: The College Affordability Crisis
EDL 595: Innovative Approaches to College Student Success

Doctoral Level
EDL 630: Organization and Governance
EDL 632: Higher Education Finance

Research Interests

Higher education finance
Higher education administration
Leadership in higher education                                                                  
Philanthropy in higher education
Regional public universities
The college presidency
Privatization in higher education                           
Comparative education

Professional Memberships

Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE)
American Educational Research Association (AERA)

Recent Media Mentions/Expert Comments:

(2020, April). “Five LI universities cut 300 staffers over shortfall despite federal stimulus money.” Newsday. Available here.

(2020, April). “Public higher ed funding still has not recovered from 2008 recession. Available here.

(2020, April). “Why is Zoom so exhausting?” The Chronicle of Higher Education. Available here.

(2020, March). “UW-Madison braces for estimated $100 million loss because of COVID-19 pandemic.” Wisconsin State Journal. Available here.

(2020, March). “‘The worst-case scenario’: What financial disclosures tell us about coronavirus’s strain on colleges so far.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. Available here.

(2020, February). “In the race for students, even the winners have plenty to lose.” The Chronicle of Higher Education. Available here.

(2020, January). “Cross Village window openings prompt questions after OU student death is ruled suicide.” OU Daily. Available here.

(2020, January). “$10M STEM building gift follows $19M fraud plea in ’04.” The Western Front. Available here.

(2019, November). “$5M Walmart gift to help pay for UA student success center.” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Available here.

(2019, November). Universities are facing criticism for taking dirty money. Do their donor policies protect them. The Chronicle of Higher Education. Available here.

(2019, September). “Why dorms are so nice now.” The Atlantic. Available here.

(2019, August). “When private colleges cut ties with presidents, it can mean a 6-figure golden parachute.” The Chronicle of Higher Education.Available here.

(2019, July). “This 5-word phrase has become a mantra for slashing college budgets. The Available here.

(2019, July). “Some faculty worry president’s new positions make CU system admin heavy.” Daily Camera. Available here.

(2019, May). University of Minnesota cuts $90M in overhead costs—but critics say it’s not enough. Minneapolis Star Tribune. Available here.

(2019, March). “Amid rising housing costs, free tuition is just one piece of college affordability.” Illinois Public Media. Available here.

Recent Publications

McClure, K. R., Barringer, S. N., & Brown, J. T. (2020). Privatization as the new normal in higher education research: Synthesizing literature and reinvigorating research through a multi-level framework. Higher Education: Handbook of Theory and Research.

McClure K. R., & Eppenstein-Anderson, P.+ (2020). An uneven playing field: Fundraising at public regional universities in the aftermath of the Great Recession. Philanthropy & Education.

McClure, K. R. (2019). All public universities get private money, but some get much more than the rest. The Conversation. Available here.

Orphan, C. M., & McClure, K. R. (2019). Rural anchor institution: Examining a regional comprehensive university’s efforts to serve its rural region. Journal of Research in Rural Education.

McClure, K. R. (2018). Institutions of opportunity: Using presidents’ narratives to re-tell the story of public regional universities. Journal for the Study of Postsecondary and Tertiary Education, 3, 117-134.

McClure, K. R., & Titus, M. A. (2018). Spending up the ranks? The relationship between institutional striving for prestige and administrative expenditures at public research universities. Journal of Higher Education, 89(6), 961-987.

McClure, K. R., & Ryder, A.J. (2018). The costs of belonging: How spending money influences social relationships in college. Journal of Student Affairs Research and        Practice, 55(2), 196-209.

McClure, K. R., Frierson, L.+, Hall, A.+, & Ostlund, K.+ (2017). Patterns in giving by philanthropic foundations to higher education institutions: A state-level social network analysis. Philanthropy & Education, 1(1), 1-28.
* John Grenzebach Award for Outstanding In-Progress Research in Philanthropy for Educational Advancement (CASE)

McClure, K. R., Ryder, A. J., & Mauk, A. J. (2017). It all adds up: Examining and enhancing campus climate for affordability in college. Journal of Student Financial Aid, 47(2), 23-46.

Select Service

Provost’s Advisory Council
Budget Committee, UNCW Faculty Senate
Faculty Senator, UNCW Faculty Senate
University Curriculum Committee
Doctoral Transition Task Force
UNC Faculty Assembly Alternate Delegate
Editorial Board, Philanthropy and Education



Additional Information