The $4,087 student

In this week’s issue, staff writer Zachary Rogers previews The Rally for Higher Education. The event, which will be held Feb. 7, is exactly the type of call to action that Northern Kentucky University students need to respond to.

We can all afford to be lazy occasionally. On a Friday night, when homework is due on Monday, most students see no reason to scramble. However, something like the upcoming rally is an area in which we shouldn’t dawdle.

Granted, to most it might not sound like a rock concert. There won’t be any celebrities to get your picture with (or any crappy $10 beer to drink). But, make no mistake, this is worth it.
The rally is more than a free lunch and excuse to get out of class. But, hey, even if that is all it’s worth to you, you should probably still go.
If you’re not a numbers person, you might find the implications of the rally to be overwhelming. A 6.4 percent budget cut, millions of dollars and, undoubtedly, other obscure budget references are all thrown into the mix. BUT, as a student, there are two numbers you need to know, and one simple fact.

The regional full-time equivalent (FTE) that is given to NKU for each full-time student is $4,087. The average regional FTE is $5,667. We’re pretty sure that you believe you are worth more than $4,087. Apparently, the state legislatures don’t. We need to show them otherwise.

What all of this means is that over time, that FTE is going to keep dropping, along with NKU’s budget. But, no worries. Tuition will continue to climb. Essentially, the state legislators are treating students like used cars. Our value appears to be deteriorating, according to them.

If we don’t decide to step up and attend events like the higher education rally, we’ll have to eventually point the finger at ourselves as the culprits of crappy tuition at NKU. It is the same principle as, “If you don’t vote, you can’t complain.”

So, if you’d like to attend a university that isn’t $40,000 a year, we’d suggest you get your ass down to Frankfort, get a free lunch, and show a few stuffy legislators what you’re really worth.