Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Letter: Thanks to legislators who supported state budget

The following is a letter to the editor written by University of Illinois Springfield Chancellor Susan Koch:

"Over the past few days, Illinois state legislators came together to end a historic and deeply damaging budget impasse. 

All of public higher education, including the University of Illinois Springfield, breathed a collective sigh of relief. Though funding in the coming year represents a 10 percent reduction from the UI’s fiscal year 2015 appropriation, this budget will enable UIS to continue to deliver on its promise of an exceptional, personalized university experience for students.

In addition, continuation of the Monetary Award Program will provide financial aid that makes college possible for more than 700 students at UIS. 

Just as importantly, this state appropriation will enable UIS to continue its forward trajectory — graduating students who will contribute to their professions and their communities. 

I am deeply grateful to the Illinois legislators who voted to support ending the impasse. On behalf of the entire UIS community, my sincere thanks to state Reps. Sue Scherer and Sara Wojcicki Jimenez, along with Sen. Andy Manar, our area legislators who voted to support the bill. We know this is a step in the right direction to restore long-term stability for higher education in our state. 

UIS is a vital resource in Sangamon County, with a total economic impact each year of about $176.8 million. With continued support from the state, the university will remain a vital resource for many years to come. 

My sincere thanks, again, to the legislators who understand that supporting higher education is essential for the future of our state."

This letter appeared in The State Journal-Register on July 11, 2017.

Read the letter online.