HOKAY, so we all know that colleges are strapped for cash right now. Antioch College has closed, Harvard’s not letting in transfer students and the UC system just got screwed again. Not that I blame Sacramento anymore – the problem’s bigger than it is.
The question of college financing is bigger than any set of people involved in it, certainly. Students, administrators, faculty, government (sorry, Kelly!) and banks will all have to reckon with a new and fair system of paying for college. What can we do in the short term to shore up college coffers, though?
I found an interesting solution on the Spectrum website. For those of you who don’t know my browsing habits, Spectrum comments and reports on the Seventh-Day Adventist Church (in which I grew up) and its environs, giving a “critically loyal” perspective – it’s aimed at pastors, academics, and laity with uncomfortable questions and comments. Apparently, an SDA college president runs marathons to raise money for scholarships. His running programs have pulled about $190,000 so far – chump change when looking at UCLA, perhaps, but a sizeable amount nonetheless.
It makes sense, doesn’t it? we’ve got plenty of people running, walking, and dancing to save little kids, cure AIDS, end poverty, whatever.
Here’s an idea: Why can’t we take that energy and idealism and work on ourselves?
I’m sorry if I sound callous; those are all wonderful things, but our own capacity to give depends on how much we have. I don’t give a lot – I know both of my parents are working to put and my sister (!) through school. As a result, I fight to keep as much money as I can to use on myself and I pay my tithe regularly in the belief that God will boomerang it back my way in His inscrutable time. Also, I have a huge change drawer in my room.
I wonder if we could cultivate a running program like Oakwood’s to earn money for student scholarships? USAC could administer it, or a seperate entity like Dance Marathon. Who’s with me?