Statement from Chancellor William E. Kirwan Regarding University System of Maryland Funding for 2012-13

Adelphi, Md. (May 16, 2012) -- For several years now, with strong support from Governor Martin O'Malley and the General Assembly, the University System of Maryland (USM) has drawn national praise for its success in containing costs, developing efficient operating procedures, and making our institutions affordable. This week, the Maryland General Assembly ended a special legislative session with the approval of a fiscal year 2013 budget that will allow the USM to continue to make quality, public higher education a realization for families all across the economic spectrum.

The budget for the USM cuts approximately $11.3 million from the one proposed by Governor O'Malley but provides the funding necessary to avoid the very significant reductions contemplated by the "doomsday budget" that would have likely forced double-digit tuition increases. The combined support of the General Assembly and Governor O'Malley has allowed the USM to make extraordinary progress in keeping our institutions affordable.

Our country is emerging from the most severe economic decline since the Great Recession, during which it has become commonplace for states to see annual, double-digit increases in tuition at public colleges and universities. Yet, in Maryland, an in-state undergraduate who entered a USM institution in the fall of 2005 and graduated in four years experienced exactly zero increase in tuition. Moreover, with the leadership of our governor and our legislature, the USM has moved from having the 6th most expensive tuition nationally for in-state undergraduates to 25th.

As chancellor of the University System of Maryland, I applaud the state's continued support of the USM and its mission of serving the needs of our students and the state. During the past several years, Maryland has rejected the national trend of disinvestment in higher education. From Pennsylvania to California, university budgets have been slashed, resulting in massive tuition hikes, significant layoffs, devastating cuts to service, and erosions in quality. During this period, Maryland has chosen a different-a smarter-direction. Recognizing higher education as the engine of innovation, discovery, and knowledge that will propel our economy and quality of life forward, Maryland continues to make funding for the USM a top priority.


Contact: Mike Lurie
Phone: 301.445.2719