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Provost Martin and President Skorton Speak

The University is scrambling fast to find the $17 million that it needs to match the generosity of the Princeton's and Columbia's of the higher education world.

David Skorton in a column in the Sun today (emphasis added):

We must work to secure more financial aid to allow those of varying economic circumstances to be a part of Cornell. We must be prepared to do our part to convince Congress to increase the availability of federal student aid, especially in the critical Pell Grant program. We must bolster our state legislatureís support of the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) and the opportunity programs that help make Cornell more accessible. Moreover, our upcoming comprehensive philanthropic campaign must include a strong thrust in need-based student aid, even as we consider reallocation of funds within our control in the current budget.
And Biddy Martin at a Faculty Senate meeting last year:
We would like to be able to compete with (these financial aid policies), and we will spend more financial aid dollars in order to compete for the best students but we canít possibly now, nor probably in the foreseeable future, and possibly ever, compete with what Harvard, Yale and Princeton have decided to do.

Some people believe that it might already be starting to make a little difference but in my meetings with the Ivy Provosts, the Provosts have acknowledged that it is a very, very, very difficult thing to do. Why is that? Because students and their families care about more than just money and a lot of students from backgrounds with which I feel Iíd be familiar, donít feel comfortable, donít believe they would feel comfortable at Harvard, Yale and Princeton.

Ouch. Score one for Biddy. Besides, who needs those elitest East Coast over-glorified country clubs anyway?

But here's to hoping that the University will find an extra $17 million a year to compete in the student aid ams race, and that it will find it soon.

Matthew Nagowski | Posted on September 20, 2006 (#)

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