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A. 400 Q. How many illegal immigrants would receive in state tuition, Alex?

Kerry Healey, WTF? It is outrageous that our Lt. Governor makes a mere 400 students a campaign issue while refusing to acknowledge the existence of the commonwealth’s 30,000 students currently attending state higher education institutions. That’s 400 students that would pay $40,000 for a degree at the University of Massachusetts Boston - anything but a free ride.

Hey, K. Heal! Talk about people like me! I attend state university. And in state tuition is no gift, take Ryan’s word for it . How does punishing these 400 students help me? 91 classes at UMB were canceled this fall because not enough students were enrolled; clearly, there is plenty of room.

If you gave a damn about higher education, why has the attendance costs of Massachusetts’s public colleges and universities increased by 50% over the last five years? (Hint: the answer is not illegal immigrants.)

Can't UMass get some of that billion-dollar surplus? Apparently not, says Thursday’s Globe :

Although Romney talks about a commitment to higher education in the mold of great public universities in Ann Arbor, Mich., and Madison, Wis., the talk in his case has been exceptionally cheap. Under Romney's leadership, the state's per capita contribution to higher education slipped to 47th in the nation. Negotiated salary agreements were not honored. Capital projects, unfunded for a long time, yield rotting infrastructure, such as the parking garage at UMass/Boston.

It is criminal that Massachusetts’s 30,000 state college/university students (some of us are registered voters, by the way) are taking a back seat to a mere 400 people – 400 people that would have to take on serious debt to pay millions of dollars into an under funded higher ed system. Immigrants are not taking away spaces for Massachusetts students. Immigrants do not take financial aid dollars away from Massachusetts students, since only US citizens are eligible for finical aid.

This is a non-priority in the real world. It should be a non-issue for Massachusetts’s voters. Can we move on to debate relevant issues now?

Further Reading:

In-state tuition not a draw for many immigrants

The Massachusetts tuition measure, which largely mirrors those passed in the other nine states, would allow the children of undocumented immigrants to obtain in-state college tuition rates if they attended Bay State high schools for at least three years, graduated from such a school, and signed an affidavit affirming that they have applied for citizenship.

Immigrants DO pay taxes!

While it has been evident for years that illegal immigrants pay a variety of taxes, the extent of their contributions to Social Security is striking: the money added up to about 10 percent of last year's surplus.


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Just want to point out that 91 classes being canceled doesn't say much about how much room there is. It also doesn't mean there are 91 full professors out there eager and willing to take on a classroom full of undergrads. A lot of times classes are offered and then taught by adjunct faculty or grads who get paid a tiny amount of money for the work involved. Adjuncts get no benefits and are typically not a cohesive part of the university. It says a lot about the health of UMB and of public colleges in general when they are not building a core group of full-time faculty members to teach. Lack of funding from the state has a LOT to do with that at UMB - the cuts had to come somewhere, and it wasn't just in those ridiculous curriculum fee hikes.

Thanks for pointing this Globe article out, so many people are anti-anything about illegal immigrants but this gave me a new perspective and I appreciate it.

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You're right. I didn't have the patience to flesh out a full argument discussing all the issues involved, and I doubt anyone would have the patience to read it.

One connection I would like people to walk away with is that Romney/Healey talk up this billion budget surplus, but students/faculty see budget cuts, yearly tuition hikes, and today's major higher ed issue is a debate about excluding 400 students from college who would, in essence, increase sales in the state's higher ed system.

One additional analogy I would like to make is between UMass and a car dealership. A Cadillac dealership sells $40K Cadillacs. UMass sells a $40K education. If someone walks into a Cadillac dealership and wants to pay $40K for a Cadillac, the dealer does not check that person's background. The dealer takes the $40K to the bank. If someone wants to pay list price for a $40K education, sell it to them and bank the money.

I am for undocumented immigrants paying the instate tuition. But I would agree that it is an issue worthy of debate if opponents could agree that it doesn't rank as a top priority concerning Mass. higher ed. In other words: let's sell them the $40K education for now and get back to this when the system is healthy.

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When will people figure out that the "fake" debate about undocumented immigrants is just a distraction.

Kerry Healy's "tough" stance is meaningless since immigration is really a federal issue, and we can be sure she will not start any trouble with her party in Washington.

Mass residents should be more outraged over how Romney/Healy have underfunded the state's universities and community colleges.

Her statement that illegals can go to private shcools is the same attitude she has towards legal Mass residents.

I'm sure if the republicans had the chance they would cut of state schools completely.

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Well some of us have figured it out, Georgia.

I found this report today surfing the web. It would cost taxpayers between $15 billion and $33 billion to reduce the undocemented alien population in Massachusetts to zero.

People hollerin' to "send them back" must understand that it would cost the US in the range of $150,000 and $215,000 per immigrant to send them all back (or + $200 billion across the US). $200,000,000 to "send them back"? Not with my tax dollars.

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