UNC System = Big Government

There have been two big developments in the system in the last couple weeks. First off, the state budget came out and UNC cashed in. The DTH reports:

The 2006-07 budget proposal put forward by the N.C. Senate on Tuesday would fully fund a host of major system priorities, including more than $79.2 million to support enrollment growth and almost $21.6 million for need-based financial aid…senators are backing a pay raise of 8 percent for system faculty during the next academic year and the promise of annual 6 percent increases in future years. The system’s Board of Governors had requested only 5 percent.

North Carolina is already a leader in per-capita spending on higher education, spending more than any other state of comparable or larger size on higher education. This funding raise that wasn’t asked for shows how UNC spurs big government and tries to bleed taxpayers dry. Students are hopeful that the increases will stop class sizes from increasing and the number of TAs teaching classes, but only time will tell if those expectations will be met.

The second development is the hope of some legislators and residents of Rocky Mount that N.C. Wesleyan will join the UNC system. The DTH reports:

A special provision in the budget calls on legislators to study making N.C. Wesleyan College, a private school in Rocky Mount, part of the UNC system. If the provision makes it through the rest of the budget process, $50,000 will be used by the UNC-system Board of Governors to conduct the study.

George Leef asks the obvious question:


Why on earth would we want to start ladling public money into a school that has managed quite well for half a century on funds raised from willing donors and students?

The answer: there is money to be had. Political interests are going to try to obtain it.

Conclusion: The size of Government in our lives grows.

3 thoughts on “UNC System = Big Government

  1. So, let me get this straight. The BOG just approved yet another round of tuition increases for students AND the government is increasing funding to the schools so that it can pay faculty more? I have one question. How is this actually benefiting students? We’re still going to have classes taught by TAs (most of whom have little teaching experience), professors are still going to be more worried about their own research than effective teaching and they’re all going to be getting paid more. So, instead of spending this money increasing enrollment and construction and paying the existing staff more, why isn’t the money spent on hiring more staff so that classes are smaller and students are able to gain more out of college. The last time I checked, the most important output of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill isn’t buildings or research, but students well equipped for the world. It seems that the only thing the NC Senate and UNCBOG are interested in equipping are their reputations and wallets.

  2. The reason faculty should be paid more is that they’re constantly being drawn to other universities that do pay more. As apparent proponents of the free market, I’d expect you to understand that.However, I do agree we shouldn’t be pushing for enrollment growth (construction is debatable) or addition of another school to the system at a time like this.

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