"So, Rich. Read your Foolish Forecast on DeVry's (NYSE:DV) fourth quarter. How'd it turn out?"

Oh, forget about the quarter. Don't you know that a fourth-quarter earnings release always comes with full-year news attached? Let the mainstream press jabber about the short-term news. Here at the Fool, when we get a chance to write about the long-term view, we take it. And so, without further ado, I present: DeVry's results for fiscal 2007:

Although this was buried several paragraphs into Monday's release, CEO Daniel Hamburger set the tone for the news, boasting of "record earnings" arriving "only two years following the launch of our turnaround plan," and predicting continued "positive momentum in fiscal 2008 and beyond."

Sales grew 11% to $933.5 million this year; profits rose 75% to $1.07 per share. However, it's worth noting that DeVry recorded a sizeable benefit from real estate divestitures this year. Back those out, and profits still would have risen 25% to $0.89 per share. Add back in severance and restructuring costs, and profits would have been about $0.94 per share. So on balance, it was a good year for profits.

DeVry's biggest achievement came (as is so often the case) from its smallest operation, the Chamberlain College of Nursing, where enrollment just plain soared -- up 83% year over year. But DeVry's flagship operations at DeVry University and the Keller Graduate School of Management were no slouches, either. Both new and total student enrollment increased nearly 10%, while the firm's most profitable student body -- online course-takers -- grew even faster at 26%.

And after enrollment comes ...
Before we close today's story, I want to address one statistic about the for-profit industry that often gets short shrift among both investors and writers (Yours Fool-y included). Namely, how well do students do after they have already departed the college and their role as revenue-producers has ended? Do they find jobs?

You see, companies like Universal Technical (NYSE:UTI) and Lincoln Tech (NASDAQ:LINC) seem to think the secret to recruiting students is: "spend more on advertising." DeVry, it appears, knows that the best advertising is being able to show potential students that past students parlayed their tuition money into gainful employment. Which is why I find the firm's statement that 92% of students graduating from DeVry are employed, and at wages averaging a respectable $41,000, impressive. Quite simply, I believe that the more money DeVry students earn upon graduation, the less money DeVry will need to spend convincing them to become students in the first place.

What's the Foolish consensus on DeVry? Find out in:

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Fool contributor Rich Smith does not own shares of any company named above. Get your free refresher course in The Motley Fool's disclosure policy right here.