The Daily Gamecock

In Our Opinion: Pastides' proposal should become reality

USC will not raise tuition for three years as long as the state provides more funding, President Harris Pastides said Wednesday in his annual State of the University address.

After five years of steep tuition hikes, Pastides’ promise is one we’re eager to see come to fruition.

After the recession severely cut into USC’s funding, the university raised tuition by as much as 7 percent a year to cover what was lost. USC has brought in nearly 5,000 more students since then, continuing to grow after Pastides promised incoming classes would hold steady. If one thing’s for certain, USC is determined to maintain its cash flow, no matter the circumstances.

So what if the state doesn’t agree to step up to Pastides’ proposal?
State funding has dropped to a meager $97.6 million for the Columbia campus since Pastides was named president, which clearly doesn’t bode well for our side of the negotiations. To make matters worse, Gov. Nikki Haley hasn’t exactly been a steadfast advocate for higher education.

It’s no secret that South Carolina has performed poorly in many educational statistics, but something’s got to give. Right?
Maybe, but maybe not.

When the question about who is responsible for keeping education affordable is posed, don’t count on elected officials to raise their hands, a fact USC knows all too well.

While we’re all thrilled at the prospect of steady tuition, we’re wary of counting on the promise as much more than mere posturing.
After years of finger-pointing between state government and university officials, we’ll believe it when we see it