S.C. public colleges will talk about state funding and workforce training during a governor’s higher education conference Wednesday at the State Museum.
Some schools, including the University of South Carolina, want the Legislature to change how it helps pay for those schools, basing how much state money each school gets on a college’s size and success rather the current formula, which uses historical budgeting trends.
“If it’s not the last best time, it’s certainly the best time for us to come together with government to reform how we fund ourselves,” USC president Harris Pastides said. “Business as usual shouldn’t persist.”
Pastides said he is concerned schools will more and more lean on higher tuition rates unless there is a different funding formula.
Pastides, along with presidents Fred Carter of Francis Marion University and Mary Thornley of Trident Technical College, are among the panelists scheduled to talk about funding and regulatory issues.
They will be joined at the conference by some of the lawmakers who hold the state’s purse strings, including Senate Education Committee chairman John Courson, R-Richland, and House Ways and Means chairman Brian White, R-Anderson.
After the keynote speech by the general manager of Boeing’s North Charleston plant, Jack Jones, S.C. Commerce Secretary Bobby Hitt will talk to the conference about supplying training for the jobs of the future.
Hitt will lead a panel on the future of workforce training that includes executives from BMW and Michelin, Clemson trustee chairman David Wilkins, Senate General Committee chairman Thomas Alexander, R-Oconee, and House Education Committee chairman Phil Owens, R-Pickens.
Gov. Nikki Haley will attend the conference, her office said.