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Help Restore State Support for Independent Higher Education in Maryland

MICA and other Maryland independent colleges and universities receive essential annual operating support from the State of Maryland through the Sellinger Grant Program, which recognizes that a diverse, top-notch array of higher educational institutions is essential to the vitality of our state’s economy and our communities.

Posted 02.12.08 by MICA Media Relations

MICA and other Maryland independent colleges and universities receive essential annual operating support from the State of Maryland through the Sellinger Grant Program, which recognizes that a diverse, top-notch array of higher educational institutions is essential to the vitality of our state's economy and our communities.

This important funding is in danger for the coming year. Governor Martin O'Malley's Fiscal 2009 operating budget calls for level-funding the Sellinger Program, despite double-digit increases for public higher education. This will result in an overall decrease in the per-student funding MICA will receive in the coming year. This significant decrease in annual support from the state will create a serious budget challenge for MICA.

The Maryland Independent College and University Association (MICUA) is in Annapolis actively advocating for ongoing support for MICA and other independent colleges and universities in Maryland, they have asked for our help in showing the legislature that funding independent higher education is important to Maryland citizens. For more detail on this issue, you can go to http://www.micua.org/prtakeactionnow.htm.

MICA is joining other Maryland independent colleges in asking those who care about MICA to please write a letter in opposition to the Budget Reconciliation and Financing Act (Senate Bill 91/House Bill 101) and in support of the Sellinger Program. Your letter doesn't need to be lengthy. A brief and to the point letter from a constituent is a powerful way to let elected representatives know what voters care about.

If you would like to send your letter via email, please address it:

TO: ulysses.currie@senate.state.md.us; norman.conway@house.state.md.us

CC: thomas.v.mike.miller@senate.state.md.us; michael.busch@house.state.md.us; edward.kasemeyer@senate.state.md.us; john.bohanan@house.state.md.us

BCC: tbjarekull@mica.org; jandiorio@mica.edu

AND send a copy of your letter to the Governor using the online form at: http://www.governor.maryland.gov/mail/

If you would like to send a hard copy letter, here are mailing addresses with the letter template below:

The Honorable Ulysses Currie,Chairman, Senate Budget and Taxation Committee,Miller Senate Office Building, 3 West Wing,11 Bladen St., Annapolis, MD 21401

The Honorable Norman Conway,Chairman, House Appropriations Committee,House Office Building, Room 121,6 Bladen St., Annapolis, MD 21401

LETTER TEMPLATE

DATE:

Dear Chairman Currie and Chairman Conway:

Explain who you are. Explain that you are writing to oppose the provisions of Senate Bill 91/House Bill 101, "Budget Reconciliation and Financing Act of 2008," which reduces State aid to independent colleges and universities. Briefly explain why support for independent higher education is important and how MICA specifically contributes to the vitality of Baltimore and the State. [See the bullet points below for messages you can include.] Conclude by thanking the legislators for their past support and request that they restore funding for the Sellinger Program (State aid to independent colleges).

Sincerely,

[your name & signature]

Cc:

The Honorable Martin O'Malley, Governor, State House, 100 State Circle, Annapolis, MD 21401

The Honorable Thomas V. Mike Miller, Jr., President of the Senate, H-107 State House, 100 State Circle, Annapolis, MD 21401-1991

The Honorable Michael E. Busch, Speaker of the House, H-101 State House, 100 State Circle, Annapolis, MD 21301

The Honorable Edward Kasemeyer, Chairman, Senate Health, Education and Human Resources Subcommittee, Miller Senate Office Building, 3 West Wing, 11 Bladen St., Annapolis, MD 21401

The Honorable John Bohanan, Chairman, House Education and Economic Development Subcommittee, House Office Building, Room 350, 6 Bladen St., Annapolis, MD 21401

Founded in 1826, Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) is the oldest continuously degree-granting college of art and design in the nation. The College enrolls nearly 3,500 undergraduate, graduate and continuing studies students from 48 states and 61 countries in fine arts, design, electronic media, art education, liberal arts, and professional studies degree and non-credit programs. Redefining art and design education, MICA is pioneering interdisciplinary approaches to innovation, research, and community and social engagement. Alumni and programming reach around the globe, even as MICA remains a cultural cornerstone in the Baltimore/Washington region, hosting hundreds of exhibitions and events annually by students, faculty and other established artists.