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Students rally against cuts to higher education

SPRINGFIELD -- It was a lesson in politics for UI students.
SPRINGFIELD -- It was a lesson in politics for UI students. Students from all three campuses were at the Capitol Wednesday, urging lawmakers to support higher education and calling off funding cuts. WCIA-3's Alex Davis keeps us Connected to the Capitol.

The students say budget cuts to higher education threaten their progress. They're visiting with lawmakers one-on-one to tell them how vital higher education is to the state.

"We can't really afford to have any budget cuts this year."

UI students are asking lawmakers to hold off on cuts to higher education.

"It's really important that we have the budget stay exactly where it is from last year. Matter of fact, we're actually receiving the same funding that we receiving in 1965, so it's really important that our budget stays exactly where it's at."

Students from all three campuses made their voices heard at the statehouse, talking with lawmakers about why their schooling is worth saving.

"The money you put into education is well-spent and it results in higher functioning individuals going into the workforce and the state of Illinois."

Their trip also included a quick talk with Governor Pat Quinn and photo-ops with UI President Robert Easter.

"Higher education funding is truly critical to all of our universities."

Easter says, to keep pace with other colleges, the university needs funding to attract the best students and educators.

"In order for us to continue to attract the kind of faculty and to offer the kind of programs that we currently do in the future, we have to continue to have state support."

Just last week, university presidents went before the Illinois House Higher Education Appropriations Committee, pleading with lawmakers to hold off on cuts, saying further cuts will cause more layoffs and higher tuition rates.
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