Cal U participates in “Invest In Me” Campaign


Mari Boyle, Staff Writer

The lack of bipartisanship in Harrisburg has taken a significant toll on multiple aspects of Pennsylvania, one of which is PASSHE schools. California University of Pennsylvania is one of these state funded schools. The inability for the Pennsylvania state legislature to pass a budget has led to these 14 PASSHE schools living in a financial limbo, unable to predict how much funding they get, how much they should be spending, and how to accurately make fiscal decisions.
University leaders are only left to responsibly assume how to financially plan for upcoming years, assumptions that could potentially affect the university and its students. As Cal U sees a significant decline in enrollment and thus a decline in revenue, no state budget and an unclear funding amount puts Cal U in a dangerous position. PASSHE schools faced a decrease in funding during the recession and that funding has remained stagnant since. This has led to Cal U, along with other PASSHE schools, to make significant budget cuts, furlough employees, put programs in moratorium, and reduce the amount of classes offered.

While this is certainly a disappointment and a disservice to students it also is the reality of declining enrollment, declining revenue, and flat funding from the Pennsylvania state government.
So, between the declines in funding since the recession coupled with Pennsylvania’s state legislatures inability to pass a budget, PASSHE has initiated a social media advocacy campaign. The fourteen PASSHE schools are in the midst of a massive and vigorous social media campaign called #InvestInMe. Students from each school take pictures holding a sign that says #InvestInMe, their school logo, and the words “I Am…” Students then post these images on to Twitter and also add #InvestInMe onto their tweet. This is to raise awareness that our state government should look at these state funded schools and their students as an investment not an expenditure. Students use the words “I Am…” to explain how they will provide a real return to the state’s investment in their higher education. Whether it be through their career choice, their service to the community through college programs, their leadership in college clubs, or whatever the case may be. The campaign shines a light on the people that benefit from this funding and how they in turn will benefit Pennsylvania. According to PASSHE’s website, “80% [of students] will remain in Pennsylvania after graduation and will continue to contribute to the economy within their local communities and the Commonwealth.”
Students state wide have been posing and posting with the #InvestInMe signs to show Pennsylvania how much their education means to them. If you take a look through your own twitter feed you are sure to see Cal U students posting and tweeting. As an incentive for schools to participate, the school that has the most tweets will be announced at Advocacy Day in Harrisburg and the Student Government President of the respective school will speak, as well. So, I encourage you if you care about your education, the organizations you are involved in, and the professors and advisors you have at your disposal, to please stop by Natali 101, pick up a sign, and start tweeting.