With over 22,000 students, Boise State is the largest university in the state of Idaho. However, some organizations believe the university and its students are not being compensated fairly for those numbers.
The Associated Students of Boise State University (ASBSU) have created an initiative called “Broncos Deserve,” which, according to Cassie Sullivan, ASBSU’s secretary of external affairs, “is a campaign intended to raise awareness about inequitable funding to Boise State University from the state of Idaho.”
According to Sullivan, Boise State students only receive 2/3 the amount of funding per student, compared to other universities in Idaho.
In 2011, Boise State received only $2,127 per student, compared to University of Idaho’s $3,395 per student. However, enrollment records show Boise State’s student population at 19, 664 in the fall of 2011, while the University of Idaho’s student population only reached 12,312 in the fall of 2011.
Sullivan believes the difference is a matter of updating the idea that the University of Idaho is not Idaho’s only leading university.
“There is no justification for the gap,” Sullivan said.
Connor Griffith, a junior kinesiology major agrees.
“I think it’s ridiculous. They are both public universities,” Griffith said. “They should receive the same amount of funding. I would say the same thing if Boise State was getting more (funding) than University of Idaho.”
If the Idaho Legislature were to give Boise State an increase in money allotted for each student, the money would have to be taken away from other institutions and universities, which creates a separate controversy.
“We recognize the difficulties in taking money away from institutions, yet, it does not explain (or) justify Boise State receiving the lowest amount of state dollars. An Idaho student should not be penalized for choosing one Idaho institution over the other,” Sullivan said.
ASBSU’s “Broncos Deserve” campaign informs students and legislators about the inequity as well as making a case for every Bronco.
“Our plea it that the state values every student in Idaho the same. It is not an issue of rivalry; it is an issue of equality,” Sullivan said.
Students who want to get involved can visit Broncosdeserve.com and sign the petition. Students can also visit the ASBSU website.
Sullivan encourages students to fight for the money they deserve.
“In order to make this case, we must showcase the value of Boise State students,” Sullivan said.