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A Lack of Resources Causing Devastation Statewide

With the budget crisis worsening in Pennsylvania, it could make for some devastating consequences here at Temple. 

President Neil D. Theobald went to Harrisburg to speak on Temple University’s behalf in order to regain the funding the university needs and deserves in order to provide the massive amount of public support it does for the community.

An article by the Temple News quotes President Theobald stating, “‘The vital relationship between Temple and the commonwealth is based on a simple understanding: We provide access to an affordable, excellent education and groundbreaking research and healthcare for hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians,’ Theobald said. ‘In return, you, as representatives of the people of Pennsylvania, help to support state-related institutions like Temple.’”

According to that same article, “Temple faces a $175 million budget deficit, nearly $150 million for education and another $26 million for healthcare.” Without the proper funding, important programs to the university and its students could be taken away.

Theobald testified that Temple Option, Fly in 4 and Temple University’s hospital all provide vital resources for the students and the community.

Temple Option provides students with more opportunity as “starting with applications [in the] fall of 2015, students [could] apply via the Temple option without submitting a standardized test score, such as the SAT or ACT,” according to another article by the Temple News, “the university is responding to the growing body of research evidence that shows high-school GPA, class rank and ‘noncognitive’ factors (such as a student’s grit, determination and self-confidence_ are more reliable predictors of success.”

Similarly, Fly in 4 provides a resource to the university that improves a student’s overall experience while attending Temple University by “helping raise the university’s expected four-year graduation rate,” according to an article by the Temple News, “This year 600 more sophomores than in last year’s sophomore class are on track to graduate in four years.”

Lastly, Temple University’s hospital, according to Theobald, provides hundreds of thousands of patients without healthcare with treatment in its emergency room. This is hugely beneficial to the community as a whole. 

However, without the $175 million dollars necessary to keep these programs alive, they could die along with Pennsylvania’s proposed budget plan. 

Other universities in Pennsylvania, like Penn State and the University of Pittsburgh for example, are experiencing in similar problems. They have come together, alongside Temple, to speak out about the issue in a public letter, “For many decades, and through several budget crises, the financial commitment of the state government and the taxpayers has built institutions to educate our youth, conduct life-changing research while bringing billions of dollars into the state, and operate numerous outreach programs that impact millions of Pennsylvanians and add immeasurable value to the economic vitality of the Commonwealth,” the letter goes on to state, “Without those funds, our universities would be forced to replace nearly $600 million from other sources. It doesn’t take much imagination to envision the impact on our students.”

Here at Temple, we have programs like the Temple Telefund, which reaches out to alumni, faculty and friends of the university in order to gather the proper funds to provide scholarships and resources that allow students to access a higher education regardless of their financial situation. 

Statistics released by College Board show the benefits society as a whole experiences when the population has access too and receives a higher education, “Of adults who grew up in the middle family income quintile, 31% of those with a four-year college degree moved up to the top income quintile between 2000 and 2008, compared with just 12% of those without a four-year college degree.”

Furthermore, those statistics show an obvious result of an educated population: they have more access to jobs and more access to higher wages, “The 2012 unemployment rate for four-year college graduates ages 25 to 34 was 7.1 percentage points below that for high school graduates. The unemployment rates for those with associate degrees and with some college but no degree were 4.0 and 1.6 percentage points below that for high school graduates, respectively.”

For reasons like these, when discussing Pennsylvania’s budget crisis and education, we as a society should take into consideration the he devastations a lack of resources could cause for a community, state and society as a whole. 

Temple University Student | Journalism Major
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