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The Boston Globe

Opinion

JOAN VENNOCHI

Publicity raises UMass funding hackles

The ties between alleged Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and the state’s public higher education system are coming to light at the worst possible time for the University of Massachusetts.

UMass President Robert L. Caret is pushing Beacon Hill for a $39 million funding increase for the next fiscal year — just as taxpayers are absorbing news about Tsarnaev’s outstanding $20,000 tuition bill and apparently poor academic record at UMass Dartmouth. The accused terrorist also had a circle of protective buddies associated with the same campus, who allegedly destroyed evidence connected to the bombing. Two of the friends — Dias Kadyrbayev and Azamat Tazhayakov — are Kazakh nationals who enrolled at the school with student visas. Bad grades invalidated the visas, but that didn’t keep them out of the country or off the campus.

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