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The Boston Globe



Mass. public universities need aid, but also cost-saving reforms

Governor Patrick’s proposed $172 million increase for public higher education in fiscal 2014 rests on these pillars: Nine of 10 graduates of Massachusetts public colleges and universities will still be here a year later, while most non-native, private-college students move out of state; and Massachusetts ranks just 28th among the 50 states in funding for public higher education, a situation that shifts more costs onto struggling families.

Most of the increase in the first year would go to the MassGrant program, which provides stipends for low-income students attending either public or private institutions of higher education. Other proposed increases are targeted to help prepare community college students for the workplace and provide enough state subsidy to cover 50 percent of students’ educational costs at the University of Massachusetts.

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