UW-Madison alumnus and Louisiana State University President F. King Alexander gave a talk on campus about the dangers of declining levels of state funding for higher education. The talk was organized by the Wisconsin Center for the Advancement of Postsecondary Education (WISCAPE).
Alexander earned his Ph.D. from UW-Madison's Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis in 1996.
Alexander noted how state disinvestment in higher education poses a significant threat for public colleges and universities. He explained how the federal government can use its fiscal leverage to encourage increased state investment in these institutions, by tying federal funding to that investment.
This idea, called "Maintenance of Effort," is described in a report Alexander shared at the event.
Alexander also noted that efforts to strengthen private education institutions have come at the expense of public ones. When federal funding was made available to public and private schools, private schools just got more expensive and public schools received less money.
The Daily Cardinal quoted Alexander as saying, "LSU is on our football team helmets, but why have the 'S' if you aren't going to fund us?"