President Coleman urges alumni to back increased state funding


President Mary Sue Coleman is asking all U-M alumni in Michigan to help the state recapture its leadership in higher education funding, by telling their state legislators they support the governor’s proposed funding increase.

In an email message sent Thursday to 90,368 alumni in Michigan, Coleman encouraged them to become familiar with the efforts of the Business Leaders for Michigan group, which is advocating for further state investment in higher education. Overall, U-M has more than 200,000 alumni in the state.

“I am immensely grateful to the Business Leaders for Michigan for the leadership of statewide CEOs in supporting public higher education. BLM believes that our public universities are one of the state’s key assets for future competitiveness,” Coleman said in her message.

“They have worked for a number of years to deliver that message to our communities and to our state leaders. And now they are taking further action through Make Opportunity Affordable: Support Higher Education in Michigan, a campaign to encourage our state’s citizens to write their legislators and urge them to support the governor’s proposal for increased higher education funding.”

Coleman called the governor’s proposal of a 6 percent increase in higher education funding “incredibly significant” and a move that the whole country will be watching.

“We have the chance here in Michigan to recapture national leadership with support of our public universities. The end result will be more affordable college costs for Michigan students, and more innovation for our state’s economy. We’ve worked hard at U-M to do our part in keeping the cost to attend affordable, particularly for students from our state.

“I firmly believe that states that do not invest in higher education will not win in the 21st century. And I want the state of Michigan to win.”


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