Budget cuts kill campus

 Uncategorized
Aug 262004
 
Authors: Vincent Adams

 

Wow! Campus is a mess. I come back and see my not-so-long-ago

fears have come true.

Higher education is usually first in line for the state funding

chopping block. A few years ago I was fretting for the future for

my soon-to-be beloved alma mater as CSU was scrambling to solve a

difficult paradox: provide the resources for a growing student body

while facing huge cuts in state funding.

The problems were really just starting when I graduated, and now

that I am back, I have witnessed the damage the university has

sustained.

I am sure many of you have noticed how crowded our campus has

become. There are now more than 25,042 of us. All of us require

unique university services to satisfy our educational needs. First

and foremost on our list of needs are smaller classrooms and more

class sections, something the university simply cannot provide in

many instances.

Many teachers have fallen by the wayside because the university

simply cannot afford them. This, obviously, reduces the number of

class sections available. Adding to the problem is the huge volume

of students trying to get into these classrooms.

My poor British Literature instructor is facing a huge workload

for her generosity. She recently e-mailed us Brit Lit enthusiasts

saying she will allow overrides for more students than she

originally intended because she understands our need to take the

class, learn and eventually graduate.

With an already huge workload herself, she has to carry the

extra burden of educating more students because the Colorado

government has apparently decided higher education is not as

important as funding highway construction projects. And, despite

her best efforts, the quality of education declines because she is

stretched out so thin.

Sure, every part of Colorado is experiencing growing pains and

we need a renovated highway system, but as a future teacher and

current student I can’t fathom why our basic funding needs are

sacrificed at the expense of so many other “necessities.” After

all, higher education is grooming the future leaders of our state,

country and world.

To CSU’s credit, those who work within the administration have

worked diligently to assure students will get the best education

possible regardless of state cuts. I can’t imagine what would

happen if we didn’t have so many people at CSU who didn’t put

students’ needs first.

I could complain about the state government’s lack of enthusiasm

in helping us students and teachers out because I honestly feel

elected officials could do more to prioritize higher education, but

everyone is in a tough pickle. There is simply not enough money to

go around.

But I can complain about an electorate – you guys – who put

other needs ahead of higher education. We elect our

representatives, but we let them set the agenda. We let them decide

what is important and let them choose what is and isn’t a

priority.

Vote, whine and complain. College students are probably the most

immobilized political group, and that is why our needs are often

sacrificed. Sure, we won’t always be college students, but our

society lives and thrives through education.

Preserving and improving higher education sets the foundation

for our future world, and that foundation’s crack will only get

larger if we don’t fix it.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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