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Thursday, March 31, 2011



BRADFORD, Pa. – Dozens of University of Pittsburgh at Bradford students, joined by staff and faculty, gathered in the cold Bromeley Quadrangle Thursday afternoon for “Stand with Pitt: Rally to Restore the Budget.”

The purpose of the rally was to raise awareness of the university’s plight in light of Gov. Tom Corbett’s proposed budget, which would cut the state’s contributions to the University of Pittsburgh by 52 percent.

Dr. Livingston Alexander, president, spoke at the rally, assuring students that the Pitt system will not close regional campuses and that Pitt-Bradford will not eliminate majors.

“We are very optimistic that things will change” during the budget process, he said, but warned that tuition increases are “inevitable” and an attempt will be made to keep increases at a minimum.

Alexander and others speaking at the rally also urged those gathered to take their concerns to their legislators through letters, voting and attending Pitt in Harrisburg Day April 5. Pitt-Bradford will be taking a full bus of students to the capital next week to meet with members of the legislature, who will have to amend and approve the final budget.

“We’ve entered challenging times, but that does not make higher education less important,” said Jasmine Iddings, a public relations major from Locust Gap who was one of the student speakers at the rally organized by the Student Government Association.

Iddings, a junior, said that her brother will start college at Pitt-Bradford in the fall, giving her parents two children in college.

“If these budget cuts go through, the sad truth is that neither of us would be able to continue our education because we couldn’t afford it,” she said.

Dr. Greg Page, associate professor of psychology and president of the Pitt-Bradford Faculty Senate, spoke on behalf of the faculty.

Page said that most members of the faculty are not afraid for themselves, but for tuition increases that could be faced by their students.

While retiring faculty are being replaced, searches for some new faculty positions have been put on hold. Faculty who are already teaching an overload of courses may not be able to continue teaching courses that have few students, he said.

He urged students to continue their fight, as did Erik Austin, a broadcast communications major from Duke Center and one of the rally’s organizers.

“The student response to this matter has been astonishing,” he said. “We need to stay strong and stay involved.”

In addition to the rally and Pitt in Harrisburg, lobbying day, Austin, freshman Daniel Robinson, a nursing major from Smethport, and members of student government organized a letter-writing day last week that yielded 135 letters to representatives.

They are also working on a DVD to take to legislators next week and a call-in day, when they will ask students, alumni and friends of the university to call their representatives.

Alexander praised student leaders for their organizing efforts.

Alexander said he has always considered Pitt-Bradford students the best in the commonwealth.

“Now I tell legislators how worried our students are,” he said.

Photo one Trent Johnson and Alida Leslie take time at the rally to sign up to take a bus to Pitt Day in Harrisburg, when students from all Pitt campuses will travel to the capital to lobby legislators.

Photo two The Pitt-Bradford Panther is in attendance at “Stand with Pitt: Rally to Restore the Budget” held on campus Thursday afternoon.


Anonymous said...

shouldnt a colledge pay for itself? considering how much it costs per individual a colledge should make money hand over fist. if they are losing money it is their own fault for mismanaging funds. the state funding of secondary shools is a great thing, and a noble thing for the state to do when buget allows. i think too many outfits have grown acustomed to this free handout. learn to survive on your own, or someone who can will replace you. secondary schooling is not a right it is a privelage, in my opinion. earn it to deserve it.

Anonymous said...

pitt doesnt need it...its state system schools like mansfield and iup that need it

Anonymous said...

I am glad that people on here think they have the right to set the standards.. Everyone deserves a education if they choose to get one. Why should we the students be punished for trying to get a education and for the second person how about you look into tuition costs because pitt students pay much more than the ones you listed and may be you should realize that every state school needs help from the state.

Anonymous said...

that is because PITT IS is not a state school....

Anonymous said...

"I am glad that people on here think they have the right to set the standards"

We are the tax payers!!! Of course we get to set the standards!!

If pitt students are paying more then where is all that money going? It is going into beautification of the university right? Maybe that isn't what state assistance is for.....WE CANT AFFORD IT!!!

Anonymous said...

My son is finishing his second year at Pitt and if these budget cuts go through and tuition increases, he's not going to be able to finish his last 2 years. We just cannot afford it and being that I make "middle" class income, we do not qualify for grants. I'd be better off to quit work and live off the government then my son would get a free education.

Anonymous said...

Pitt and Penn State get millions and millions of dollars in private donations every year ! Its time to stop the government welfare !

Anonymous said...

First pitt is a state school and second you cant get public assistance if you are in the middle class.. So what you are saying is everyone should go on welfare so we get a free education and last it takes millions upon millions to keep a school running and lastly we pay taxes as you do so who makes you any better than we the people getting a education

Anonymous said...

Students often work and pay taxes too.
Education isn't free, it's very expensive, not only in staffing costs, but also the actual physical upkeep of the schools. Costs keep rising, like gasoline, natural gas, electricity, food, etc, etc.
The state subsidizes in-state students so they pay less than the actual cost of their education. Without these subsidies, the costs will rise substantially to the students, in effect, taxing them to go to college.
So the govenor's pledge of 'no new taxes' doesn't apply if you're a college student, or apparently if you want to use a shooting range on game lands.
Corbett doesn't want to tax his 'friends' in the gas industry, and blows smoke up the rest of our wazoos saying 'no new taxes'.
He's creating finacial hardships for a lot of people who don't have extra money to operate on, but if you're one of his friends or a contributor to his campaign, you're in!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I am willing to bet that the people on here that are "slamming" the state funding of Pitt are on their way to the mailbox to pick up there STATE WELFARE check and then going tomorrow to their local food bank to get their STATE cheese. Why? Because they are too LAZY to want to do anything with their lives but sit on the computer (with state funds) and rip on people who care about an education. Much easier in their eyes to just take the free check, play cards and smoke to all hours of the night, and sleep until noon. Enjoy the money that WE are paying YOU with OUR taxes. And remember, food stamps can't buy dog food, but hamburger is covered for those who collect the welfare check and figure that they need pets as well!!! Sorry students, but it is the LAZY people who are causing you to lose funding for your schooling. Take it from them, just let the govt. support your habits and pay your medical (like all the calls to the chicken coops for a "general illness"). Grow up and deal with a little head cold. I vote YES for Pitt funding!!!

Anonymous said...

Why don't we cut the ridiculous subsidies going to oil and gas too? There's a big chunk of change. But no, better to crap on the future of America, right? Let's not even TAX the oil and gas companies on this shale treasure chest that they are sitting on, but keep people like me from securing our own future through higher education. Yep, that sounds fair!

Anonymous said...

Hey 2:42 my state welfare check huh? I have BS is Business Admin from Penn State and earned an MBA from There as well. I work full time at a great job, have a wife and daughter (that are very well taken care of), worked 2 jobs to put myself through college. Let me share some of what Penn State taught me on their public Dollar....If you don't have the money, don't spend it....thats what your pretentious "butt" would call a 101 level class. One things about this site is you have not idea who is going to be able to make you look like a jack ass...I am more than happy to take that upon myself!!

11:46....How much were the 2 buildings that UPB put up last year? Do you expect any of us to expect to support that?

They are going to cut something....52% probably not, but the education system does not get to be the only entity not affected by budget constraints. It's not fair, and its not your fault, its your problem....Deal with it like the rest of us.