Sunday, February 03, 2008

How Much is URI Worth?

**Notice R.I. with the only minus number of -1.2%

"State-tax support for higher education climbed 7.5 percent in the 2007-8 budget year, to $77.5-billion, according to a national survey.... It was the highest annual increase since 1985."

Every year URI pleads for research funding with even the Economic Development Council throwing in. We have been at the bottom of the list for this funding for awhile. After 1970 the State reduced % funding, even while State revenues increased.

The following is from an 8 yr. old study published by URI's Dr. Logan. I'm also giving you some of his updated numbers here. If we're searching for economic engines for the present/future, seeking to attract good businesses here, and wanting the quality of life to improve for ALL out citizens- look no further.

The University of Rhode Island is the State’s only public Research University. It is also a Land Grant, a Sea Grant, and an Urban Grant institution. For each designation, URI has unique responsibilities as part of a system of national research universities.
The University is charged with conducting research for the public good and of educating the next generation of scientists, technicians, teachers, and leaders. URI differs from the other two Rhode Island public colleges in its commitment to offer advanced masters and doctoral degrees and by a commitment to sophisticated research and outreach. (link here)

....Research Universities conduct research in many applied fields neglected by industry or government. Examples of areas of investigation... include studies in health (other than pharmaceutical product development), alternative energy sources and energy conservation, and sustainable agricultural technologies which require lower use of fuels, fertilizers, and pesticides. Research Universities provide research and expertise needed for sophisticated environmental monitoring, ground water protection, land-use planning, and natural resource management and conservation
State funding currently accounts for 26 percent of the university's revenue (2008) while student tuition fees account for 62 percent. URI lost $5.5 million in state funding since last year, and more budget cuts are expected.

"We are one of the poorest-funded states in the country," Weygand [V.P] said. Carothers said URI receives $75 million from the state. According to the 2008 R.I. state budget appropriations, Rhode Island College receives $45 million, and the Community College of Rhode Island receives $49 million from the state.

Carothers [Pres.] said educating each student at URI costs an average of $19,000 per semester. In-state students are paying $8,000 in tuition and fees, and out-of-state students are paying $23,000 in tuition and fees. (Tyler Wills in The Good 5 Cent Cigar)

From the Projo:

The governor’s new budget plan will all but guarantee “a serious double-digit” increase in tuition at the state’s three public colleges....," said Higher Education Commissioner Jack R. Warner.
Further, the governor told the state’s Higher Education Assistance Authority to cut more than $1 million in need-based scholarships administered through the Rhode Island State Grant Program.

So what is the right amout for students to pay? How much is a public university worth to we the people? Our economic engine is right under our noses.
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