Morehead State strongly against UPike proposal

By: Andy Cunningham Email
By: Andy Cunningham Email

Some Kentuckians voiced how they feel about the possibility of a private university becoming public.

A forum took place at Morehead State University at 9 a.m. Friday to discuss legislation that would make the University of Pikeville a public school.

Already, the Rowan Fiscal Court has adopted language that says UPike going public would hurt Morehead State University and the local economy.

Morehead State University Regents and the President followed this morning, by voting unanimously to pass a resolution opposing House Bill 260 that would pave the way for UPike to become Kentucky's ninth publicly funded university.

"In the economy we are living in right now, where Kentucky has a structural unbalance to the budget, meaning we are spending more money than we take in as a commonwealth, it doesn't make any sense to be talking about adding another public university," said Wayne Andrews, Morehead State University President.

The proposal would take $13 million in coal severance tax money to fund the addition of the University of Pikeville into the state university system.

That amount would significantly reduce the tuition costs at UPike from the current $16,000 to around $7,000.

However Andrews argues, the financial needs of the university would go far beyond that amount.

Rather, he says, the $13 million a year could be used to fund and provide scholarships to students in coal counties.

Lawmakers in Frankfort will hear the UPike proposal next week.

Friday morning's forum at Morehead State was held in the Adron Doran University Center.

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