Opposition to Diversity Programs Contributes to the Defeat of Idaho’s Higher Education Budget

The Republican-controlled Idaho House of Representatives voted down the proposed budget for the state’s public four-year colleges and universities: Boise State University, Idaho State University, University of Idaho and Lewis-Clark State College. The bill called for $307 million in state support, just a 0.3 percent increase from the budget passed last year.

One of the reasons that the budget was voted down was because legislators believed that state universities had not taken sufficient action after a letter was sent last summer to new Boise State University President Marlene Tromp. The letter questioned many of the university’s diversity and inclusion efforts that were called “antithetical to the Idaho way.” Among these programs were separate graduation events for Black and LGBT students, graduate fellowships reserved for students from underrepresented groups, financial support for multicultural student centers on campus, and the hiring of administrators to oversee diversity initiatives.

GOP House member Vito Barbieri explained his opposition to the budget by stating: “I can’t imagine the number of vice provosts that must have been hired by these universities when we’re talking about equality and inclusion instead of reading, writing, and arithmetic. We’ve gotta figure out a way to stop rubber stamping these budgets and begin to send the message that we do have a say on what is taught and we do have a say on who they are hiring, for what purposes they are hiring.”

Others in the legislature objected to funding levels that were more than the governor had recommended due to declining enrollments at four-year colleges and universities. The legislature’s Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee will draft another budget proposal for consideration.

 

 

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Report Established by State Senator Art Haywood Uncovers Racism in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education

"Ultimately, Pennsylvania's leaders and institutions should respect the dignity of all students," says Senator Art Haywood. "The work to ensure that dignity is intact for Pennsylvania's Students of Color continues with this report in hopes that one day the work will no longer be required."

Cynthia Gyamfi-Bannerman Appointed President of the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine

"I appreciate the support I have received from my faculty and trainee colleagues here at UC San Diego along with colleagues from around the world," says Dr. Gyamfi-Bannerman. "Together we will work to advance our field and our reach, improving patient outcomes and eliminating health disparities."

Rate of Black Homeownership in America Remains Virtually Unchanged Since 2012

The National Association of Realtors has found that although homeownership rates in American are steadily increasing, the rate of Black homeownership has experienced significantly less growth than White, Asian, and Hispanic homeownership since 2012.

Safiya George Named President of the University of the Virgin Islands

“As a servant leader, I am confident I will be an effective President for the University of the Virgin Islands and will remain humble and grounded with a sincere desire to improve outcomes and the lives of students, faculty, staff, and the community," says Safiya George, who will assume the role of president of the University of the Virgin Islands this summer.

Featured Jobs