Thursday, March 10, 2011

Keeping quality education affordable

In today’s austere economic environment, we fully expected Governor Tom Corbett to propose deep, across-the-board cuts in the budget he announced this week. While we await a full analysis of his budget’s effects on Bloomsburg University’s students and their families, we anticipate the proposal could have an effect no one wants — deterring some students from seeking or completing their degrees.

Historically, Bloomsburg has provided education to our commonwealth’s sons and daughters. Today, nearly 90 percent of our 9,000 students are Pennsylvania residents who remain here after graduation to work and raise families; 40 percent of our students are the first members of their families to attend college.

We take very seriously our mission to provide them with a quality education at an affordable cost and are deeply concerned about the impact of this budget proposal, if approved by the state legislature, could have on our students’ futures.

We assure our students that we will do everything possible to avoid disruptions in their education. We will continue to be responsible stewards of tuition dollars and the public funds we receive, building on our successful record of cost reductions over the past decade. However, we cannot address the impact of the proposed budget cuts only by reducing our costs.

As we move forward, we will be guided by measures of student success centered on providing a high-quality education, creating the best learning environments, generating sufficient financial resources and partnering with our community and our state to create and sustain a strong economy.

Most of all, we will continue to focus on providing a high-quality education that is affordable for our students. Our commonwealth’s future depends on well-educated citizens.

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