Letters to the editor

Dear Vanguard,

I know you, you are a student like me, struggling to graduate and keep afloat through the year. Do you have $120 to spare each term? I know I don’t, but apparently the Oregon legislature does. I am writing you to let you know how I feel about the proposed Oregon University System budget. You must know over the past 10 years or so tuition has skyrocketed, making students like you and me doubt whether we can afford to continue taking on such a huge debt to get a degree.

If the Oregon legislature does not restore money cut from higher education, students could face paying almost $120 more in tuition per term while seeing cuts to the programs we need to run our university. That’s because the proposed budget for higher education includes two four percent tuition hikes. The money from these two increases, totalling $25.2 million, goes to replace money taken from higher education and put towards unrelated state budgets. In other words, students are paying the bill for other state programs. That is not fair!

I work two jobs to put myself through school. I am eating ramen and mac ‘n’ cheese with the rest of you. I cannot afford the $120 more each term, and I think I am not alone on this one. I am a mentor in the University Studies program as well, I would hate to see any of my students who work so hard be forced out of the system so more money could go to unrelated programs.

I personally have been working hard to tell the legislators to invest in higher education so that all of us can afford to take advantage of the opportunities it brings. All of us deserve the chance to succeed, if tuition raises so much in the next few years I fear that many PSU students will miss out on that opportunity.

Please join me on March 6 to rally on the capital steps for our rights. I know missing school is difficult this time of year, but I know this one morning missing class may allow me to go to school in the future.

Emily Kay Garrick
Vice Executive Chair
ASPSU Student Government

Dear Vanguard,

I am freshman at Portland State University. The reason I came to college was to get the best education possible. I am frustrated because of the proposed Oregon University System budget. I know Oregon has had two tuition freezes and it’s expected that tuition would have an inflationary increase.

But, the proposed budget is taking away from the university system. The Governor has proposed a four percent plus four percent tuition increase over the next two years.

Most of the money from the increase will not come back to the university system. Which means students are paying more but getting less back. This increase will be the deciding factor for many students, to take more loans out or to drop out of school. All students are paying too much in tuition. Taking away the opportunity for education is not acceptable. I deserve the chance to get an education and get the best education out there and so does every other student. What does it show when the state takes away the opportunity to get an education?

Amara Marino