Opportunity Minnesota gives students and state better economic outlook

âÄúMPIRG pushes for student debt relief program.âÄù This would be a much more appropriate title to The Minnesota DailyâÄôs article in ThursdayâÄôs paper about Opportunity Minnesota, a program based on Opportunity Maine. Although the University of Minnesota, state and nation currently face a troublesome economy, the idea that legislation attempted to curb rising costs of higher education would be editorialized as âÄòunlikelyâÄô in a headline by the stateâÄôs third largest newspaper is disheartening. With a worsening economy, now is an opportune time to explore alternative ways to fund higher education that has positive economic advantages for the state as a whole. Tuition is one key issue that unites students. Regardless of political ideology, economic situations or academic achievements, tuition increases impact every student enrolled at the University. Instead of focusing on a pessimistic outlook for this legislation, its positive impact for the state and its successes in other states should have been its highlight. Legislative change does not happen overnight. While Opportunity Minnesota may not pass during this session, Mr. Kennedy and MPIRG are laying the groundwork for the future. Significant pieces of legislation often take several years to pass. It is easy to stand on the sidelines and complain about the increase of the education weâÄôre receiving at the University, but itâÄôs another to attempt to head off the issue. MPIRG and its students are committed to making higher education affordable and keep the doors to the University open to all students. Now is the time to be proactive and ensure the opportunity for all Minnesotans to have equal access to higher education and help the Minnesota establish a stable economic future. Drake Nimz MPRIG Higher Education Co-task force Leader