Growing concerns over how the nation’s economic problems will affect higher education is expected to draw a record number of attendees to Montgomery on March 5 for the 2009 Higher Education Day.
Participants in the 11 a.m. rally on the State House steps will ask legislators to give higher education its equal share of dollars in the 2009-2010 education budget, which funds K-12, two-year and four-year institutions. The Higher Education Partnership, which sponsors the rally, represents 13 of Alabama’s public institutions of higher education, including the University.
Following the rally, participants will have the opportunity to eat a free lunch and visit with legislators on the Capitol grounds.
“It is important that the University of South Alabama be well represented again this year because we are facing continuing budget cuts,” said Happy Fulford, executive director of governmental relations. “We need to be in Montgomery on March 5 to make sure universities receive fair treatment in the budget, something that did not happen last year.”
In preparation, the Student Government Association, the Vanguard and the Freshman Leadership Council have launched a letter-writing campaign urging state legislators to dedicate more money to higher education in the 2009-2010 state budget. Form letters are available in Room 280 of the Student Center.
The new Center for Academic Service-Learning and Civic Engagement is asking faculty members to use the letter-writing campaign and the rally trip to Montgomery as a service-learning project for their classes.
For the rally, the University’s Office of Governmental Relations will sponsor a bus for faculty and staff, and the Student Government Association will sponsor buses for students. All buses will leave the University Commons parking lot at 8 a.m. and return by 5 p.m.
To discuss service-learning opportunities, contact Karen Peterson, co-director of the Center for Academic Service-Learning and Civic Engagement, at (251) 460-6148 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Students wanting more information about the letter-writing campaign should call Ashley McGee, SGA attorney general, at (251) 460-7191. To make bus reservations, contact the SGA Office at (251) 460-7191.
To reserve bus seats, faculty and staff should call Marsha Butler at (251) 460-7277, or e-mail email@example.com.