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How higher ed fares in the governor’s budget

February 1, 2012

State colleges and universities would see few increases under Governor Lincoln Chafee’s budget proposal.

Rhode Island College gets a slight bump over last year’s appropriation plus a bond proposal to make building improvements. The University of Rhode Island and community colleges are both slated for slight decreases in overall state funding.

The governor is recommending a sizeable bond to pay for construction on a new nursing school that would be located in Providence’s fledgling knowledge district and run jointly by RIC and URI. The governor has also proposed $5 million in additional state funding for student scholarships.

In addition, Chafee is looking to merge the State Office of Higher Education with the Rhode Island Higher Education Assistance Authority, the state’s main student loan agency. Higher education officials say they welcome the move, which would allow them to hire a full time commissioner of higher education.

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