TODAY'S QUESTION: What do you think of Nixon's financial aid plans?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

Gov. Jay Nixon’s plan to equalize scholarship money to students at state public and private universities has caused concern for Missouri students, faculty and parents.

State lawmakers are considering a proposal to alter the Access Missouri scholarship program by cutting the amount of money private school students receive in Nixon’s effort to reduce budget deficit.

According to a Columbia Daily Tribune story, “Access Missouri was set up to provide scholarships to in-state students who demonstrate a financial need. The program provides scholarships of as much as $2,150 for students who attend public four-year colleges and $4,600 to students at private schools.”

University presidents across Missouri, including UM System President Gary Forsee, support equalizing financial aid for all students in the state. Forsee believes “it’s unfair to taxpayers to spend more on students who opt for a private college education,” according to the story.

Those at Missouri Baptist University are rallying to protest the governor’s plan on Monday morning in St. Louis. In addition to Access Missouri, Nixon is also proposing cuts strictly to nonpublic colleges and universities, such as the Bright Flight program.

What do you think of Gov. Nixon’s proposed financial aid changes to Missouri’s colleges and universities? Will students benefit if scholarships are equalized?

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