Ingenuity Advising was founded on the belief that affordability constraints, demographic challenges and escalating financial pressures are long-lasting, secular trends that will force urgent, unprecedented, and overdue change within the education sector for years to come.

Our clients are aware of this tectonic shift and they have the courage and the resolve to break away from the herd.


Our Work

Financial Forecasting and Analysis

We quickly evaluate an institution’s financial health and sustainability by constructing a detailed pro forma forecast taking into consideration lender covenants, cash flow constraints, revenue trends and expense management practices under consideration or already in place. Our robust process provides a clear sense of the length of the “financial runway” ahead.


Strategic Options Mapping

As independent advisors, we help clients identify their strategic options and understand the potential advantages, costs, risks and tradeoffs of each. From partnerships and collaborations to asset monetization to budgetary/organizational restructuring, our data-driving analysis is informed by our experience and shaped by the particular circumstance and unique character of your institution.


Change Implementation Services

Transformational change brings with it major institutional stresses. Successfully navigating such a period of extraordinary institutional pressure requires more than competent change management, it takes broad functional experience and agile, effective and compassionate leadership. Ingenuity Advising has the relevant financial and operational experience to bring together the expertise, both within your institution and from external sources, to achieve your transformation objectives. We help you get stuff done.


Outsourced Operations Management

For clients who need “the works”, Ingenuity Advising can provide limited-duration outsourced chief operations officer (OCOO) services.

Past Projects

DePaul College Prep

As chair of the finance committee of the board of directors, Jeff Bethke assisted with the successful financial turnaround efforts, which included the establishment of an emergency liquidity plan, a financial and operational restructuring, and the recruitment of a new administrative leadership team.

Once operations stabilized and as enrollments have grown, Jeff helped negotiate the purchase and financing of new facilities for the school. The school relocated to its new home, a 74,000 square-foot academic complex on a 20-acre campus, in August 2020.

Aerial view of DePaul College Prep campus with football field
DePaul College Prep front entrance

University Center of Chicago

As president of the Educational Advancement Fund, Inc., a nonprofit joint venture serving four universities, Jeff Bethke led the successful operations of a 1,729-bed, 18-story “superdorm” (the largest student housing facility in Chicago), the University Center of Chicago, which consistently generated annual operating surpluses. In 2017, he oversaw the marketing and sale of the 702,000-square-foot facility for an amount exceeding $200 million.

University Center of Chicago "superdorm"

Wintrust Arena

As executive vice president at DePaul University, Jeff assisted with the establishment of a public-private partnership effort which resulted in the financing and construction of the 10,387-seat Wintrust Arena, which opened in 2017.

Aerial view of Wintrust Arena

Photo: Brian Fritz Photography, 2017