The result of declining state support for public higher education and cost shifting to students is threatening America's role in the world. In only a decade we have dropped from first place in the world to 12th in the percentage of our young people going on to college. The impact on American jobs and our ability to compete is clear for all to see. In addition, democracies cannot function well without informed and well educated citizens. Continued disinvestment in public higher education gravely threatens our future.
Oklahoma can lead the way in reversing this trend by increasing state appropriations for colleges and universities this year. Public higher education must not disappear. It's up to us to preserve it.
Boren is president of the University of Oklahoma.