Letter to the editor | Subsidy benefits residents

March 21, 2014 

Ted Sebastianelli’s March 13 letter (“Slow the rise of tuition”) said Penn State is pointing to another “impactful” tuition increase and a “majority of recent graduates are either unemployed or working at jobs that do not require a college degree.”

To quell these negative attempts to tear down this great university is one of the reasons I am running to for re-election to the board.

Responsible stewardship means trustees who have a constant concern that state funding of Penn State continues to fall, that costs for top-quality professors and the quality campus and the people who keep it that way continue to rise while keeping tuition subsidized to serve Pennsylvania residents.

The university is actually subsidizing Pennsylvania residents by $8,000 a year in reduced in-state tuition, because the board of trustees and I have always believed that we have a strong obligation to in-state students under our land-grant tradition.

As for recent graduates being “unemployed” or “underemployed,” the Post Graduation Summary Report for August 2011 shows for bachelor degrees 75.1 percent had jobs and 20.9 percent went to graduate school. This accounts for 96 percent of the graduates.

The same report shows the average starting salary is $55,801. U.S. News and World Report shows Penn State graduates’ salaries in the top 20 percent of colleges nationally.

Responsible stewardship means doing the difficult work of preserving and expanding student opportunities and the Penn State mission of teaching, research and service. It means looking to the future. That is why I am running.

Joel Myers, State College

The writer is the incumbent candidate for an alumni seat on the Penn State board of trustees.

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