By ADAM FRIDLEY
Published: Wednesday, May 1, 2013
I have spent much of the past year working within Student Government and the State Advisory Council of Students to fight against the Legislature’s cuts to Higher Education. During that time, we gave several speeches, attended numerous meetings, and collected thousands of signatures. Unfortunately for you and I, however, the efforts fell upon deaf ears, and Marshall alone received a $5.13 million cut.
The direct result of these legislative policies has attributed a great deal to the current budget fiasco at our beloved university, and I fear that the most harrowing effects will only be known after May 9th, when our Board of Governors will be forced to raise student tuition. More troubling, still, is the reality that this is only the beginning: I can promise my fellow students that. We have been told by the Governor and the Legislature that FY ’15 and FY ’16 will likely see higher education on the chopping block yet again. For two more years, students and a quality education will take a backseat to political agendas.
I fully realize that recent events on campus have caused much distress and sent shock waves through our campus community. Faculty, Staff, and Students have been angered by dire financial straits and responses thereto. I’m all too aware of complex situation in which we now find ourselves. But what I, and my colleagues in Student Government, have advocated over the past several weeks is for a renewed focus. As bad as things may be at this moment, and as upset as we may find ourselves now, a greater battle looms on the horizon.
Both President Kopp and the Board of Governors have made clear that they are committed to fighting the Legislature on future cuts to higher education; future cuts that will send tuition ever higher. Student Body President E.J. Hassan has, from his inaugural address, committed Student Government and the State Advisory Council to the fight on the students’ behalf. But as this year has shown, they cannot do it alone. The time has come for all of us, Faculty, Staff, Student, Administrator, Parent, etc., to stand up and tell the Legislature “no more.”
View complete story here: Letter from former SGA Chief of Staff