Gov. Jerry Brown’s recent efforts to ensure the sustainability of the University of California system deserve applause. The UC system has been subject to budget cuts over the recent years that have resulted in the increase of student tuition fees. The governor’s efforts, including the passage of Proposition 30, guarantees that UC Davis, and all other UC campuses, will not face mid-year tuition increases. Furthermore, the state Budget Plan for 2013-14 reflects Brown’s commitment to the UC system by outlining increased state spending for all higher education systems, including the California State University and California Community Colleges.
UC Davis students have faced numerous tuition hikes in recent years. In November 2010, the UC Regents approved an 8 percent increase in fees, followed by a 9.6 percent increase approved in July 2011 for the following academic year. Students and staff alike are impacted by the increases, which only provide a temporary fix to the larger issues in higher education.
Historically, budget cuts and tuition increases appeared inevitable for the UC system. However, under Brown’s leadership, the UC will begin to recover as his budget proposal for the upcoming year emphasizes the viability of higher education. The proposal provides $250 million in funding to the UC, enough to keep current tuition fees intact. Furthermore, UC Regents suggested a 6 percent tuition increase in order to cover any deficits in the budget, but Brown urged the Regents not to impose such an increase because of Prop. 30 and the new budget proposal. Brown is deeply concerned with ensuring the stability of UC’s tuition in order to help students and the institution as a whole.
Through Brown’s initiatives, the UC will begin to recover from the past budget cuts and focus on improving and expanding programs for students as campuses grow. Brown is attending this week’s UC Regents meeting so that his proposal ensures tuition will remain the same for following academic years. Brown’s efforts are significant to the UC because not only will they have short-term effects, but long-term effects that will benefit UC students today while beginning the road to sustainability for the UC in the future.
Edwina Anne Duenas
ASUCD Lobby Corps