“We are grateful that Governor Edwards remains a steadfast champion of higher education and his executive budget once again reflects that commitment. Strategic funding for student affordability, faculty, and staff retention, and enhanced research directly supports the progress our colleges and universities are making in improving outcomes and expanding education opportunities. We thank the Governor for his tremendous support and look forward to engaging with legislators as we make the case for these critical investments.”
– Dr. Kim Hunter Reed, Communication of Higher Education
HIGHLIGHTS OF PROPOSED INCREASE
PRIORITIZING TALENT DEVELOPMENT & STUDENT SUPPORT
Funding to Drive Performance ($18M)
Enhancing the funding formula driving talent development at Louisiana’s public two- and four-year institutions by specifically increasing support for improved outcomes in student completion, workforce alignment, and expanded campus research activity.
Legacy & Mandated Costs ($19M)
For many years higher education has been the only state sector that did not have its legacy and mandated cost increases reflected annually in the Executive Budget. Covering these cost increases mainly for retirement and health care allows institutions to retain state dollars for instruction, research, and student support, and to respond to the state’s workforce needs.
Specialized Institutions ($10M)
These targeted investments will enhance research and public service productivity at the LSU and Southern University Agricultural Centers and Pennington Biomedical Research Center, as well as instructional and research capacity at the ULM Pharmacy School, both LSU Health Sciences Centers and Southern University’s Law Center.
Talent Recruitment and Investment ($39.5M)
An increase in on-campus talent recruitment and investment funding allows institutions and entities across the state to allocate resources to their most critical needs. Institutions may allocate these dollars to provide pay increases to faculty and/or staff who are critical to improving student outcomes.
FOCUS ON AFFORDABILITY
GO Grants ($15M)
Need-based aid continues to be essential to improving student access and success in postsecondary education. This additional funding will assist institutions in meeting the financial aid needs of more students by boosting the number of awards to students, the amount awarded to students, or a combination of both.
NOTE: Currently only 30,250 students, 49% of those eligible for the program, receive GO Grant awards.
TARGETED REQUEST PACKAGE
LOSFA High School Outreach and Engagement ($3.5M)
Allows for continued direct engagement with the state’s K-12 population regarding the value of continued education and ways to navigate the college-going process including information on TOPS, GO Grants, 529 Savings, and M.J. Foster Promise. Other areas of focus include career exploration, career-related dual enrollment, and financial aid, along with outreach to non-traditional students and adult learners.
Cyber Assurance Program ($7.5M)
Enhances cybersecurity efforts among all public postsecondary institutions through increased threat detection software and creation of on-campus security operations centers to monitor and respond to cyber-attacks. The security operations centers will be used to train students on industry-leading processes and platforms. These students can earn a degree or industry certification(s), and be better prepared for immediate job placement in cyber-related fields.
Focus on Coastal Marine Consortium (LUMCON) ($2M)
Funds operational needs as LUMCON expands coastal and maritime research and education critical to our state and the Gulf region with the opening of its Blue Works campus in Houma.
Dr. Chris Yandle, Assistant Commissioner for Public Affairs
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