Revenue at the 34 other social service nonprofits rose 2.4 percent while expenses rose more slowly at 1.8 percent.
Expenses exceeded revenue at 12 of the 35 organizations in 2012, up from seven in 2011.
Revenue jumped 9 percent at Second Harvest Heartland to $115.5 million in 2012 as the hunger-relief organization continued its rapid growth. During the Great Recession and its aftermath, organizations that provide for basic human needs, such as food, have tended to see more philanthropic resources directed at them.
Second Harvest also has moved beyond distribution of shelf-stable groceries and now delivers more higher-margin produce and refrigerated and frozen products to its clients.
Revenue at the Greater Twin Cities United Way rose 1.4 percent to $93.7 million. The United Way is a major contributor to other social services organizations in this category.
Revenue grew 1.8 percent at the 33 education nonprofits in the survey while expenses for the group rose 2.7 percent. Contributions rose just 2.6 percent.
Revenue rose at 26 institutions and fell at seven.
The biggest revenue decliner was Dunwoody College of Technology, down 24.3 percent to $19.4 million. Dunwoody officials said the school has experienced a several-year drop in enrollment beginning in 2008 that was attributed largely to the decline in construction-related jobs. Enrollment has since stabilized at the private college that trains for careers in manufacturing, electronics, construction and other trades.
At Northstar Education Finance, a student loan financier, revenue dropped 17.4 percent $117 million. Northstar has seen revenue fall steeply in recent years as the student loan industry evolved as a result of reforms in federal student loan funding. As recently as 2009, the lender posted $226 million in sales.
As a group, education nonprofits appear to have recovered from the recession. Just six of the 33 organizations surveyed spent more than they took in last year, compared with eight in 2011 and 14 in 2010.
Most of the colleges and universities have a May or June year-end, and the most recent data are from the year ended June 30, 2012. Fortunes improved mainly due to improved stock market returns at organizations with large endowments.
Revenue at No. 1-ranked University of St. Thomas rose 1 percent to $331.9 in 2012 after jumping more than 16 percent in 2011.
The Rev. Dennis Dease, who served as president of St. Thomas for 22 years, retired, in June. During his tenure, St. Thomas capital campaigns raised more than $700 million.
ARTS AND CULTURE
At the 12 organizations we surveyed, total revenue dropped 6.8 percent as expenses rose 1.4 percent. That left the group spending slightly more than it generated in 2012 revenue. Total contributions rose 5 percent in 2012.