Decreased state funding does not imply poor ed.

by Mickey Rush

Over the past couple weeks in The Minnesota Daily, we have read scads of articles proclaiming that Tom Emmer ’s proposed cuts to higher education will inevitably result in the decline of quality education at the University of Minnesota, implying a direct relationship between state funding and quality of education.
Although a victory for Mark Dayton  will result in somewhat fewer education cuts, it has become clear that neither candidate can guarantee the funds that the University has traditionally received as Democrats and Republicans alike scramble to predict how to patch the state budget gap.
Therefore, it is the University’s task to maintain education standards in the coming years without support from the state government. It is time to reexamine the usual pro-education mantras and establish some priorities.
Do smaller class sizes, “state-of-the-art” facilities, and the latest technology really guarantee quality education? Do construction projects on campus result in a better education for students? Where do the funds for a massive lawsuit against the Metropolitan Council  come from? There ought to be a way to “protect the University’s vital research mission” that does not come directly out of students’ pockets.
It is necessary that the University place affordable education for the student first, innovate ways to maintain reasonable tuition rates, and eliminate irresponsible spending. I hope the University can come to terms with financial reality without rendering higher education impossible for the majority of Minnesotans.
Mickey Rush, undergraduate student