Illinois should fund aggressive capital plan to save its state universities

May 28, 2019 | By Timothy Killeen, pres. U of Illinois; Gloria Gibson, pres. Northeastern Illinois U; Zaldwaynaka Scott, pres. Chicago State U; Lisa Freeman, pres. Northern Illinois U; David Glassman, pres. Eastern Illinois U; J. Kevin Dorsey, pres. Southern Illinois U.; Elaine Maimon, pres. Governors State U; Jack Thomas, pres. Western Illinois U; and Larry Dietz, pres. Illinois State U, via The Dispatch Argus

For too long, Illinois has been near the top of a list of states with declining population. Regrettably, many of our public universities are seeing the same outmigration as talented students go elsewhere for a college degree.

Nine of 12 Illinois public universities have declining enrollment, and nearly half of the state’s college-bound public high school graduates are enrolled at campuses in mostly neighboring states. Illinois is losing its future, literally. The impact is real, affecting not just our public universities, but also dragging down local and statewide economies.

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