tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN September 20, 2014 1:00am-3:01am EDT
st. paul on american history tv on cspan 3. here's a look at what's ahead on cspan 3. up next conversations with the heads of three big ten universities. the university of wisconsin, university of illinois at urbana champagne and indiana university. that's followed by a hearing on ant anti-bottledic resistance. traveling to u.s. cities to learn about their history and literary lives. this weekend we partnered with comcast for a visit to st. paul, minnesota. st. paul in the 1930s, i
wouldn't call it las vegas, but it was a very lively city, because the gangsterings brought their gun holds, during prohibition, you had the biggest jazz artists of the decade here in st. paul. it was a very, very lively place partially because the gangsters were welcomed hear. virtually every major gangster, kidnapper and bank robber in america lived and worked within a three block area of where we're standing today, john dillinger, baby face nelson, alvin creepy carpet. all were here. people don't know that, there's no statues of these gangsters, but this was the epicenter of 1930s crime in the era of john dillinger. the fbi, the federal bureau of investigation with j. edgar hoover had this building as their headquarters. this is also the building where all of those bootleggers and
bank robbers were tried and sent to alcatraz and other prisons across america. it's where it began and where it ended. we're standing here at historic ft. snelling and we're looking over the junction of the minnesota and the mississippi rivers. st. paul is located up the mississippi river from ft. snelling. and the ft. was here before the city was. but the fort is intimately connected in the creation of st. paul. in the 1830s, there were groups of settlers that were living on the military's property. finally the army had had enough of competing with them for resources, and they felt that they should be removed officially from the military property. the setlers then moved across the river to the other side and they formed what became the nucleus of the city of st. paul. when you think about the story and the history of this region that you think beyond the walls of ft. snelling. and that's what we try to do here at ft. snelling is really push people to think more about what does it mean when all these cultures came together? what perspectives did they have
on these historic ehaven'ts? >> watch all of our events from st. paul at noon eastern on american history tv on cspan 3. this fall cspan's buss are touring big ten schools and speaking with university presidents about public policy issues impacting higher education, such as college costs and student debt, university admission policies, click lunchtime and academic standards and how universities are preparing graduates for careers and adult life. up next, university of wisconsin president ray cross. >> and this morning's cspan bus is on the campus of the university of wisconsin in madison and joining us on the bus is ray cross, who's the president of the university of wisconsin system. thank you for being here. let's begin with this distinction of being the president of the university of
wisconsin's system. what does that mean? >> within the university of wisconsin system, greta, there's 13 four-year institutions and 13 two-year feeder institutions extension is in all 72 counties, in addition to that, there are 180,000 students throughout the system. 40,000 employees. it's roughly the sixth largest system in the united states, with about a $6 billion budget. it's pretty sizable higher education, public higher education operation. >> what does it mean that you are the president of the system as opposed to a president of just let's say the university of wisconsin, madison, of one site? >> part of the theory behind a
system is that they're meant to coordinate and to develop state wide issues, issues that impact the whole state. and serve the institutions in a way that -- in terms of shared resources in helping them more effectively and cost effectively deal with some of the issues that are common to all of them. we represent each of these institutions in the capital, it's a collaborative effort on issues related to state legislation or federal legislation. >> and you reference the $6 billon an ynual kbugt for the university of wisconsin systems, state funding makes up gifts grants and contracts at about 5 billion dlrds. the impacts, $15 billion plus annually. what does that mean, this economic impact? >> most economic analysis, that
impact in terms of what it duds to the economy throughout the state, it has an impact of what we purchase and how other higher and how that money play into the economy. to that's more or less a direct and indirect impact of those expenses on the economy in the region. >> and we want to hear from wisconsin residents this morning. we have a fourth line set aside for them. we have divided lines by students, parents, educators and wisconsin residents. want to hear from you about the university of wisconsin and impact on your state. we're talking with ray cross, who's the president of the university of wisconsin system.
how big is the university of wisconsin madison? >> madison has about 43,000 to 4 44,000 students. it's probably in the middle of the big ten, sixth or seventh, in that category of big ten. it's the third largest recipient of u.s. dollars, it's a major institution, it's been ranked in the top five ever since i can remember. it puts a tremendous emphasis on research, and all the work that's being done in stem cell research. and changing those into different heart cells and even retina cells.
research in the biosciences, it's a phenomenal institution when it comes to research and energy and areas like that, it's been very active in the weather station. i think we have 18 nobel prize winners, engineering and chemistry and medicine and physics, it's a major research institution. #. >> and the university of wisconsin madison, its tuition fees for undergraduate degrees, for in state, you're looking at a little over $10,000. out of state the price tag is $26,660. the room and board costs come in at about $8,600. who decides how much tuition costs? >> i'm sorry, i didn't hear all of that, greta. >> who decides the price tag for in state and out of state?
>> the board of rejegents has authority to establish tuition, however that's generally negotiated with the legislature and a lot of that depends on the state ate coming from the state legislature. as the university puts forward it's budgets and developing it's budget, it does so in collaboration with the board, the board of regents and that process of determining tuition is a balance of what the state will do in revenue or state aid and what we need in terms of tuition. >> what is the regents board, who sits on it? >> there are 18 members on the board. they're appointed, well, some of them, most of them are appointed by the governor and affirmed by the senate. but several of those members are also occupying positions as a result of their positions, so
there are two student appointees from the governor's office, but the superintendent for the department of public instruction sits on that. one is a representative from the technical college, the board silts on the board. so there are some positions like that that are also part of the 18-member board of regents. >> have they voted to increase tuition every year? >> oh, no, currently there is a tuition freeze. we're in the second year of that tuition freeze and we are proposing that in the next two years that we also freeze tuition, we think we can do it for two more years. that does put some strain on us, there's no question about that, but we believe affordability is really, really an important issue, given student debt and those kinds of issues. we have been working with legislators and in particular the governor's office to try to balance that off so the state picks up a little bit larger
portion of our budget, that's a challenge, given the state's revenue situation, and the demands on the state's budget, as you probably know, medicaid and other nondiscretionary portions of the budget are growing rapidly, i think medicaid will go from about 17% or 18% of the state's budget to over 30% in the next decade. that leaves legislators with less discretionary portion which the higher end comes from. >> governor walker wants a tuition freeze, hiss opponent mary burke the democrat concurs. how many students are eligible for financial aid at the university of wisconsin? >> i think at the madison campus, it's about 61% or 62% currently get financial aid. obviously i believe we could do more in that area.
we're trying. the madison initiative for undergraduates alone has dramatically helped? in a few moments i'm going to go over and meet with the fund for wisconsin scholars, another tremendous financial aid effort. the wisconsin system has increased it's financial aid to help offset some of the costs for students. about 73%, as i recall, greta, of the students throughout the system receive financial aid. >> as you said, 61% of under grad students are receiving some sko sort of financial aid. there has been a tuition freeze at the university of wisconsin systems and you want to continue that, president cross. i'm wondering because affordability as you said is a big issue, do you think college is worth it? >> of course. i think every study that's been
done shows that students in terms of economic analysis, college graduates earn more, considerably more than their noncollege counter parts. in addition to that, the unemployment rate for college graduates is roughly half of what it is for noncollege graduates. there is a definitely distinguishing characteristic economically. but i don't think it should be measured only on an economic scale. the value of the university education goes beyond that, and it's important to understand what it means to have an educated citizenry. that's the fundamental, i think the fundamental piece of what a higher education experience is all about. economic impact on the family and the state is important. i think it's also important in the state of wisconsin where we are about 150,000 to 17 170,000
vacant job positions right now, it's important for the university to address the high impact talent, probably 30%, 40%, or 50% of those positions require a badegree. >> let's get to phone calls. pam is up first in middleton, wisconsin. go ahead. >> caller: good morning, thank you for taking my call. good morning, president cross. i'm calling in reference to your statement that our college is a -- i was surprised to learn that my alma mater is conducting highly controversial experiments on baby monkeys. i have also recently learned
that a petition by change.org started last week and over 200,000 people have signed that so it appears i'm not alone. so i'm calling to see how you reconcile this in the testing that so many researchers are calling unnecessary, cruel and outdated with our image and reputation as a progressive school? >> thank you, pam, the process that one goes through on university campus to secure approval to do research of that type is very extensive. as i recall, there are four different levels and the faculty that review that come from all different disciplines and it's a very rigorous process. and the need for this has to be warranted through that process. that's handled here at the madison campus by some very
conscientious and diligent people. that process has been under way and this research has been through that process so i think we have to let that process guide us. secondly, i am aware of these concerns and i have received those and we're taking those very seriously, and we're sharing this with the board, we're re-evaluating this so we are concernied about this. >> and president cross, is there federal oversight on how research is conducted at universities like the university of wisconsin, madison, does the federal government have something to say about that? >> any research involving federal funds, there are rigorous processes at the federal government requires and there is a serious oversight process and of course that's a part of this too, greta. >> and how does that process
work? >> well, it depends on the type of research that's being undertaken. most of that, there are pieces of that depending on whether you're doing lab work or if animals are involved or if there's human research involved, and there are protocols that are required by the federal government, they audit that on a regular basis and they establish the processes that help guide that. >> we'll go to bill next in amberton, minnesota, a parent there. hi, bill. >> caller: i just had a fairly simple question, my son's going to a state college here in minnesota and we had heard of collaborations like it was between north dakota and south dakota, and minnesota about a collaboration of in state fees that would be considered for colleges in different states
that collaborate financially that way, is that true or how does that work? >> yes, that is true, wisconsin also has a reciprocity agreement with minnesota. so if your son or daughter from minnesota would go to wisconsin, at in state fees and in state tuition, and vice versa, wisconsin students can attend minnesota institutions. >> by the way, cspan's big ten bus tour started out at the university of minnesota last week, if you missed that, go to cspan -- we're doing a month long series of viz sits to
various big ten institutions, the university of wisconsin system's president ray cross is with us aboard cspan's bus. greg is in madison. >> thank you for taking my call, mr. cross. i was listening when you were talking about the state providing tuition for -- as a graduate of uw, i did hear of those studies that already started, i don't recall if they had already started. i think i heart the previous
kaulzer talking about that. my bigger concern or one of my biggest concerns was that the system has not passed full committee and it only went to a subcommittee without full approval. is that your recollection of what transpired? >> it's my understanding that it did go through the entire process, that the point at least. i'm not sure that it has started, but i'm sure it's gone through -- i think it has gone through the entire process. >> president ray cross, let me throw in another issue for you and that is rural colleges, wisconsin being a rural state, you have a background in running rural colleges. what are the challenges of reaching students in these rural areas of wisconsin? >> there are a number of challenges facing those students and i was just reading about, i
think, florence county in wisconsin, which has a high school of 25 students. the size of and the scale of those institutions limits their ability to do a lot of things, i'm sure they wouldlike to be able to do. ironically, a number of the problems facing rural wisconsin schools are also facing urban institutions. and they obviously are approaching them differently, they are on both ends of the spectrum, but the challenges facing them are similar, how we deal with that and what we do to help serve those folks is, i think, very important. we're attempting to do more course options, that is students taking high school credit courses, concurrently with college courses to help them get started. the university needs to improve its ability to speak to the
remedial needs of both rural and urban students. we need, we badly need to make sure that students get into the educational pipeline, they that succeed and retain in that educational pipeline and that we connect them to businesses and opportunities both for their career and for their life here in wisconsin. and that's a challenge bothsett urban setting. >> with the cost of tuition at the university of wisconsin madison being 10,000, room and board, you add on another $8,600 what about online education. >> wisconsin i think offers something like 5,400 courses online. and we have been pioneers in the whole area of competency based educati
education, which is an innova innovative new approach into what you know and what you can do, rather than how much time is spent in the classroom. that kind of activity, i believe has a great future. now it faces a number of challenges, because in wisconsin, and i'm sure elsewhere, in wisconsin, there are somewhere between $750,000 to a million working age adults with some college, but without a degree. that number nationally is around 31 million. now if we can deal with effectively, i think we need to educate more working adults, not just 18-year-olds, but so they can compete in a future economy that requires this kind of education. >> do you see the future of
education be it online or other technology reducing the price tag of tuition as well as room and board? >> i'm not sure. there are some examples where it has. i think it has tremendous potential. it also creates several concerns. ideally, it would be a blend, a hybrid if you will between online models. but it takes the right type of student to engage in this online process and leverage it to its maximum ability. some students are just suited for that type of learning. remember, we're focusing this type of education on adult learn learner who cannot simply put their children in daycare and return to a dorm and live on
campus. we're trying to serve them e6 effectively. it is a different experience, it is not the same as you gain in a residence experience is very important. but we want to be able to serve them with the kind of experience they need at that point in their lives and i think that will ultimately have a huge impact on both them and the people throughout the state. >> gene on twitter asks this, of those enrolled, what percentage go on to graduate? >> i'm trying to remember that number i would say that we probably retain 60% and graduate in time is another things, i think in madison, in six years, the percentage is in the 70%.
we're working very hard to increase that, i believe the madison campus alone has about a 4 1/2 year time frame for most graduates. that time to degree not only saves a student and their family money, it also gets them into the workplace quicker and it's something that we want to do not only to make it affordable, but also to help our economy grow in the state of wisconsin. >> president cross, what percentage of stuchbdents are taking more than four years to graduate? >> more than four years, throughout the system, that's probably going to be around 40%, in that range. i don't remember the number, greta. we are above -- we're better than the national average, we're considerably better than the national average throughout the
system. however we don't think that's good enough, we want to do better, i think it's interesting that in my era, most students graduate within four or five years at least. however today many students are dual majoring, they're doing a study abroad, it's a high impact learning practice, they're doing internships that delay that graduation. the education they're getting is much more enhanced and complete than it was 40 years ago. >> we're going to chesapeake, virginia, arthur is waiting there. go ahead, arthur. >> caller: i want to ask the professor about the stem cell research, are you all doing anything for stem cells, as far as -- >> arthur, you got to turn that television down when you're talking with the guest, president cross he's talking about stem cell research at the
university of wisconsin madison. >> i'm not familiar with everything we're doing, but i am family with something they're doing with what i would call nondifferentiated stem cells. they're trying to take skin cells and convert them into stem cells which then can be converted into specific cells, heart, i know of one project where they're actually working on creating retina cells from those stem cells. so those are some of the broader research projects that i'm aware of involving stem cells. >> susie's next, in springfield, missouri, an educator there. hi, susie. >> caller: i have two questions. sometimes research universities have issues related to those advanced senior faculty having contact with undergraduates. i'm wondering how many adjunct
or course professors teach undergraduates and the second question is i'm also understand ing that the number of majors in that institution impacts the cost. how many majors in each discipline and how many popular majors have you had to eliminate. thanks. >> i think if i understand the question correctly, there's two parts, and that is how many senior faculty teach freshman courses. i think we're very similar to most institutions, that process is focused on making sure students do well. balancing that with their ability to interact with quality
professors. since about, i don't know in the last five or six years, those majors related to the stem field science technology engineering and math, including in some areas as art, the demand for those disciplines has gone up around 15%. unfortunately, the number of faculty serving those fields has remained about the same. so one of our challenges is to increase the number of faculty in those critically important field that the state badly needs, better serve those students and serve employers in some sense than an indirect sense in the economy of the state. that's a challenge for us. it really is, i think it's a challenge for most big ten, for most universities. so we're working very hard to do that. it's part of our budget initiative. >> joe wants to know are
corporations letting schools know what they need so the universities can produce them and why not if they're not? >> i didn't understand the question, greta. could you say it again please? >> are corporations letting schools like yours know what they want, what they need from workers? >> yes, it's also important, particularly in wisconsin that we reach out to them. i think too often we're too passive in that regard in not seeking their input on what they happen to need. in wisconsin, we having a greg gat data and we look at that in a macrosense, but there are regional differences throughout the seven regions in the state, in terms of what employers need. while it's important to do that, i fully agree with them, we're working on as one of my
initiatives to more tightly connect the university to what corporations in the state need. it's also important to recognize, that we're not here just to serve those needs, we have a broader pump in educating the complete adult. that's part of our challenge. >> charlotte is watching us in chicago as a parent there, go ahead, charlotte. >> caller: as a parent, i can say it's been an unbelievable burden to manage my son's debt. we were caught up in the perfect storm because i started a real estate investment company two or three years before the real estate market crashed. so we lost all of our money because of that. and my son was in college at the time, and so we had some initially to start to pay for his college, but we weren't able
to, so he had to start taking out loans and we had to co-sign for the loans for some reason he wasn't able to get loans in his name. so we have really been paying for college, in a sense since he started ed ied i ed ied in 200. it's just been unbelievable. we reached out to senator derbin and he and senator warren are very focused on the suffering, i call it suffering, because that's what it feels like, that families are going through trying to pay off these bills. and one of the issues i have is the interest that's being charged on the college debt, it's about 8% and my husband, what signed for about $58,000 in loans for my son, by the time he was out of college, that -- because the interest starts accruing by the way on parent plus loans as soon as the parent signs for those. i guess we were so overwhelmed business the real estate market situation we weren't even
focusinging on that. so by the time my son got out of college, some of the loans and there were more than this, we were at about $66,000. >> charlotte, where did your son go to school? >> caller: his first semester was at perdue. and thank goodness, after one semester there, he was almost afraid to tell me that he wasn't happy there, and i couldn't tell him how happy i was to hear that because of the cost of it. so that was about $20,000 that first smeemester. then he went to two and a half years of community college and finished at depaul university. >> what are the issues there, president cross? >> yes, greta, and charlotte, i understand and sympathize with that challenge you're facing.
my sympathy and my heart goes out to you because of the market crash. there are probably two or three things that are circulating that are important to touch on, about the situation that you're in. one is the refinancing capability. and you mentioned the size of the interest rates and how that is calculated ach ed and i thin are a number of folks working on that issue, so what you're pointing out is a challenge and it's something that several legislature fors at the freshman level are looking into. secondly, i think it's also important that when the clock start s impacts not only that interest rate but also your payments. given your situation, it would have been helpful had there been some accommodation with respect to your employment. and the earnings that you were making. and then thirdly, i think it's also important to note that the
financial aid process, which is based entirely on what you earned in the last year, not entirely, but heavily on that, when it changes quickly, that should be calculated differently. i understand that's challenge and there are several folks working on it. so i appreciate the challenges you're facing and also want you to know that several folks are working on that. >> we'll go to sue next in illinois, a parent there. >> caller: hi, how are you doing? >> fine. >> caller: i guess my question, one of them would be are you going to attempt to do affirmative action like the university of michigan, i do believe you're going to hurt your own kind in the long run because of the asians and people from india are going to skyrocket in those grades.
and what is your stand on that. >> the university of wisconsin -- engage in different ways of thinking, doing things. so it's not just diversity in terms of what one traditionally thinks of, it also is much broader than that. one of the mottos here at the university of wisconsin, which is, it's actually on plaques around the campus, the sifting and win knowing to use an agriculture term, i think that occurs most effectively when you're civilly engaged in discussions and interactions with people who are different,
who think differently, who explore things together in a way that -- to pursue the truth. that process is constantly being reviewed and how we do that, obviously academic prowess is the greatest importance for those students who are seeking admission to madison and several other of our campuses. but we look at broader things as well. we also want to know how, what's their potential for leadership, how engaged are they in the of the community? what's their commitment to serving others? those issues impacted a in additions heavily and so then we do also look at diversity in terms of the broad category that i would call inclue sixth. . >> the conversation now with the vice chancellor for public affairs at the university of illinois at urbana, champagne,
this is 40 minutes. >> last we're here on the american journal, we kicked off a month long series with university presidents as part of cspan's dews tour. aboard the cspan bus this morning is university provost. let me begin with what you see as the top changeses for higher education. >> well, good morning. it's nice -- welcome to everybody to our campus. to talk challengine ings for education, from where we sit in the middle of the prairie for the united states is access and accessibility for young people to improve themselves in the world. access and affordability.
because the cost of higher education has gone up over the last many years and now we have to figure out as a country, and as individual institutions how to make this affordable and accessible to young people, because education is transformational. >> so how are you doing that then? how are you addressing this challenge of affordability and access? the university of illinois at urbana, champagne, tuition for instate is over 15,000, out of state is over 30,000, and room and board can come in at nearly $11,000. >> yes, indeed. we are over the last many years, we are increased our effort in terms of financial aid.
we have given over $70 million in financial aid. we have been going out to our friends and alumni trying to raise tuition. because the tough region, probably four or five regions, that students act s s accept ou incision vittation to -- so we realize this completely. the major problem is the decrease in state funding over the last many years for institutions like ours, so it behooves us, the leaders of institutionslike ours is to really go out and to make the case to the country, to the state that education is top priority, education higher education. for is country, especially higher education is critical to
making a country abundant in terms of human productivity, social environment of the country. so a major issue for us is making sure we have financial aid for students so we can bring everybody under the spectrum to the university of illinois. >> the annual budget for the university of illinois, $2 billion. endowments you get about $2.8 billion and alumni bringing in $108,000. >> i think the -- most of that loan with the lower interest rates.
that is very important for students to get more interest on the loan so when they get out of here and have a lot of debt on their head, we're very proud on our campus that a ledefault rate, and also the loan on our students when they get out is lower than the national medium. there is a role to really make every impact on students, their families, and the future of the country as a whole to be able to produce and give lower interest rates for students to partake of higher education. which is a bedrock of a democratic society. >> you have 19 to 1 student to faculty ratio, 150 under grad
majors. 84% of students there are taking six year toss graduate. and in 2013, your research expenditures are over $143 million. what is your job basement record for those students who are graduating from the university of illinois? >> very, very high. very, very high. over last year, we had over 8,500 companies visiting our campus, trying to recruit talent from our campus. and probably more than 100 of fortune 500 companies come to our campus. i don't know the specific number rikts now, but we're very sure that the talent that's reported from the university of illinois are desirable at a very high rate and we put -- we bring our
best to the table what i call the workhorse and the racehorse of talent for this country. my understanding is that cspan is going through the big ten. we have a counter part, which is an official aspect of the big ten. i think we walk together very closely, collaborate in terms of academic programs achkd administrative programs. and we look at toetzal submission of the big ten. we produce the largest number of talents for this country. so this is, i mean what's being dproently is exposing the power of the big ten as far as economic development in our society. >> and our goal here as part of this month-long series of interviews with with university presidents is to talk about the issues of higher education. and this morning our guest is the provost at the university of
illinois. we want to invite our viewers to join in on this conversation. we divided the lines by students, parents, educators and illinois residents. want to get to your concerns, your questions, your comments on higher education here. how do you address the curriculum at the university of illinois to make sure that it is aligned with job skills and what companies need in the workforce?
>> the fundamental role of a public university is making sure that we train students for critical thinking and to partake of the society's -- i think just being a job shop is not something that we like to do. we want to be able to produce the fundamental theory and practice of each individual jur major so that students can go out and be productive in society. because we know that students will go through many stages of their lifetime, how do you prepare them at a funding major league level for that, we have a great engineering school, we have a great business school. we have our own unique attrib e attributes of educating our students, but have the humanities, social sciences contribute to the aspects of training of students at a fundamental level, that's what
university of illinois has been and great institutions like this are doing to make sure that opportunities are not only prepared for one job but are able to translate from job to job over their lifetimes. that's our philosophy and i'm sure it's the philosophy of other trade schools, specific schools that prepare students specifically for some type of jobs. but ours ask to make sure that we prepare the whole individual to become leaders in the society in whatever they choose to do. >> tony's up first, a student in rosewood, california. >> caller: hi. i returned to school after not being in for quite some time and i go to a very nice university. and i agree with him that it's very expensive and he's saying that he's looking forward to the federal government doing more. but there's also a limit on a lifetime limit on how much the
government would help you because there's a new law in place that you can only get pell grants for so many years, so that's not helping people that went to school earlier, maybe like in the '90s or something and are returning to school now because now i'm on the limb on how much the federal government is going to help me. so i would like for you to address that. thanks. >> well, thank you very much for your call. i think as i mentioned previously, the main, the chancellor, myself, we have a foundation and we're working very, very stutd youly to make sure we raise funds for people like you, we raise funds for scholarships, for grants, so people can come here to the prairie and actually get a very great education. our fundamental issue is being able to raise those moneys and provide grants and scholarships to everybody that is interested
in coming to the university of illinois. so as i mentioned previously, the funding over the last 20 ye a little bit challenging for all of us, to tell the truth. but over a long time, you'll find that great institutions have great foundations and are able to raise money to really help, to help and assist students because that is the fundamental thing that university and the fundamental aspirations of this institution itself. >> and on this issue of affordability, the daily illinois the daily newspaper had this headline, less illinois students are attending the university due to cost. dee in chicago, an illinois resident. dee, you're on the air. dee, listen through your phone, please. turn your tv down.
go ahead, dee. >> caller: good morning. this is my first time -- >> thank you very much. >> it's been a pleasure. i'm so proud of you. and god bless you. >> thank you. thank you very much. thank you very much. >> caller: we have a lot of students don't have parents or parents do not have good credit line and they're declined for student loans. they have to drop out of college. what provisions do urban that champagne have for those kind of students in place? >> well, in times of -- we do not like students dropping out of our institution, but the main thing is if we are able to connect the students, get to the students beforehand, we're able to look at all the portfolio of
funding that are available to the student. so, if you know any student that is in that particular situation, send them to my office, send them to the advisers because one thing that happens is that students are not aware of the resources on campus that can help them. so that's assistance we have to give to our students. we have financial littersy, how do you get four-year training or six-year training to the individual to be able to go to the university of illinois without owing too much because we are very, very aware of heavy burden of loan on students when they go out is not something that we want to encourage at all, but we have 76% rate four-year graduation rate and 84% rate at six years. we're very proud of that. and my goal, as the provost, is
actually to get that to 90% so that we can, we can really graduate students at a very high rate and really workhorse of this country which is a very great country. >> go ahead there, a parent there in new jersey. >> caller: yeah. i think that education loan is up because these people in america are making profit from it. when i went to college, i went to community college and i went to state college. my credit was $45, but now my children and my grandchildren, they are now paying over 200 credit in new jersey. i think -- what i am advising all americans who can vote to go out and vote for the party that will be receptive to the problem
of this society. the people we have now, they are not receptive to the poor people. they are receptive to the wealthy people. that would be my advice. >> okay. let's take that point. is the university of illinois more -- listening more and more intently to wealthy donors to wealthy people than it is to the minority and poor people who want to attend the school? >> not at all, not at all. we listen to everybody. this is a public land grant university. we're created as such and we believe in that mission passionately because i'm a product of public education. i'm originally from nigeria as you might have inferred from my name, but i'm a product of what
you may call -- what land grant universities can do to an individual. so, we listen to everybody and try to reach people who want to donate here, we have to make sure that their volumes and priorities are aligned with the campuses. that's critical for us. because it is not just the money but the principles and the value, the core values that we hold deep as a public land grant institution that wants to have a global impact at a state level, local level, state level and globally. that's ambition. that's our vision and that's what we're set to do. >> let's go to john, bloomfield hills, a parent there. go ahead, john. >> caller: yes. good morning. i am a first-time caller. i've listened usually in the mornings. i have two children in college. i think it's important to understand that there's a disconnect from what i believe universities are generally offering in terms of overall education that the guest was
talking about and the requirement to get a job that pays. my one daughter at michigan state university chose construction management over veterinary science because she knew she could get a well-paying job and she just did get one. another son going to ohio northern university is choosing construction management just because he knew that my daughter got a job doing that. it's so important for people to understand that you just can't go to get a soft degree today. you have to have employability. >> well, we don't have soft degrees at university of illinois. we bring students here what i call raw, young minds and turn them into refined young minds when they leave here. some people are very focussed on the type of job they're going to
get when they leave this place, but there are some students who are still trying to explore. their own human being, aspects of themselves and take some time before they actually arrive at where they feel comfortable in life. so, we provide a spectrum of education as the chief academy officer of this campus, i believe in that. we give people what we call general education and if you're in engineering, you go out and specialize in your engineering degree, business. so we provide a spectrum of majors, activities, resources for students, study abroad, so we make the whole person, not just the first job, but the whole person for life. that is the function of public land grant universities, in my belief. >> we're talking with the provost at the university of
illinois at urbana champagne. we kicked it off last week at the university of minnesota and went through week. and this week as well. yesterday we talked to the president of the university of wisconsin of the wisconsin systems there and today we're at the university of illinois and this tour will continue for a month long as we continue talking about higher education issues and that is our topic for all of you out there. what are your questions, your comments, your conditions with higher education? you can keep dialing in now. we have about 20 minutes left here. we'll go to pat next in carbondale, illinois. go ahead, pat. >> caller: yes, hi. i'm calling in several regards. one is in particular the parent-plus loans and how that affects parents and -- i have five children who i got through school. two, one is in college now and one is about to go to college. parent-plus loan is set for parents to pay back. i think that's a tragedy in
terms of how that is set up. also for children applying to school, if you're middle income, they assume you have money to pay for college and you don't get all the benefits of financial aid in terms of -- you get loans but that's all your children can get. i'm on my last child, hopefully he'll get a full ride somewhere and we are considering your school, but we want to know what is actually out there for middle income people who they say have all this money, we're paying house note, car notes and all that, what do we have that helps us to get our students through school? >> well, we're working very, very hard really. i mean, i'm sure it's not only our institution that is doing this. we're working hard for the lower income and the middle income families to be able to afford college. apart from the federal loan, state loan and the money that we
try to supplement without grants and scholarship from the campus, we don't have enough. we don't really have enough. we've been going to what i usually call our grate and grateful alumni to be build up our portfolio to help people like your family to come to the university of illinois. this is something that we are doing. we are making sure that the increase in tuition is held at the inflation rate making sure that people can really afford school. it's a pity. i went to school and a four-year college after that. and i i know at that time, the institution rate was very, very low. but with the current state of the economy, the current state of the economy and decrease to a large extent in the state funding has been very,ry