In case you missed it earlier today, be sure to check out this new and sobering release from the Justice Center on the sorry state of North Carolina’s investment in higher education:

North Carolina’s spending on higher education cut deeply since 2008
Shortchanging public universities and colleges reduces access to higher education, hurts economy

RALEIGH (May 13, 2015) — Even as most states have begun to restore funding for higher education that was cut during the recession, North Carolina has continued to cut funding for public universities, according to a new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.  As a result, tuitions have risen dramatically and the quality of education here has suffered, which will make it harder for the state to attract businesses that rely on a well-educated workforce.

“Smart investments in public colleges and universities will help to strengthen North Carolina’s economy,” said Cedric Johnson of the Budget & Tax Center, a project of the NC Justice Center. “Communities with highly educated residents attract employers who pay competitive wages. Their employees then spend money in their community, boosting the economy of the entire area. That’s what North Carolina needs as our economy continues to recover from the damaging Great Recession.”

Nationwide, states are spending 20 percent less per student on higher education than they did in 2008, after adjusting for inflation. With such deep cuts in higher education investment, colleges and universities have had to raise tuition, cut spending, or both. As a result, tuition at four-year public colleges has grown nationally by 29 percent since the 2007-08 school year.

For North Carolina, costly tax cuts in recent years have hindered the state’s ability to invest in what works, such as its well-regarded public university system. State funding for higher education has been cut by more than 20 percent since 2008 when adjusted for inflation, according to the new report. Meanwhile, the average tuition at a public, four-year college increased by 36 percent during this period. Read More


The good folks at the NC Defend Education Coalition will gather this Saturday at NC A&T in Greensboro. The group — which is spearheaded by college students — could also use some donations to help defray the costs. Scroll down for more details.

Here is the official announcment:

The future is ours! A fight back and organizing conference of the NC Defend Education Coalition: With a keynote address from Waldemiro Vélez Soto, a leader of the student movement in Puerto Rico

Saturday, March 24 // 9am – 6pm — NC A&T University, Greensboro

***Register online today!

On February 10, hundreds of students from across NC marched against tuition hikes and budget cuts.

On March 24, we’ll be gathering again to chart out the next steps for our movement. Read More


The following is from the good people at the NC Defend Education Coalition. Click here to support their excellent cause:

“On February 10, the UNC Board of Governors will vote on tuition and fee increases for all UNC system schools. Some hikes could exceed 10%, compelling students to speak out against the increase that will effect many students’ ability to access higher education. They have found support from many organizations, including the NC NAACP President Rev. William Barber II.

Earlier this month, the Association of Student Governments (ASG) pledged to support student efforts to have a presence at the February 10 meeting by funding transportation from every school.

But under pressure from the UNC General Administration and Board of Governors, Read More