Keeping Count

Temple’s anniversary is worth celebrating, but it needs to be kept in check.

The first semester’s tuition for law classes at Temple in 1884 was $12.

Inflation really sneaks up on you sometimes. That’ll happen over the span of 125 years.

The Temple News is proud to bring you this special edition, featuring coverage of Temple’s 125th anniversary.

Each of us is here for a reason. For some of us, Temple was our top college choice. For others, it was farther down the list. And a select few might have come kicking and screaming.

Regardless, we are here receiving a top-notch education during the school’s 125th birthday.

When it comes down to it, we all deserve to celebrate this anniversary equally. Without Russell Conwell, none of us would be here. From the administration to the freshman class, we should all feel fortunate to be at Temple during this significant time, and we should all have an opportunity to reflect on the storied history of this university.

However, celebrating is hard to come by right now. The struggling economy has had an impact on most of us in some fashion, and Temple University is no different. Just a few weeks ago, The Temple News reported the university must cut $40 million from its operating budget for 2009-2010.

Where’s that money going to come from?

The university has already cut about $11 million. A hiring freeze is in place, and out-of-state travel is mostly restricted. Grants have been lost, and jobs may be in danger.

All the while, tuition is on the rise. This is nothing unusual, as tuition rates for many colleges across the country rise annually.

But anything that is perceived as frivolous spending will be perceived as coming from our bank accounts. Dollars that could have gone to scholarships or other academic needs were instead spent on tablecloths and special flags. We hope it doesn’t come to that.

Reaching 125 years is a milestone worth commemorating, but in these tough economic times, a close eye will be placed on the administration to see where money is going. Anything that seems excessive will be questioned.

Sacrifices must be made by everyone. As students, we should understand if the luxuries we once were given – Liacouras Walk picnics, ice skating at the Bell Tower – are temporarily put on hold.

Temple almost reached its goal of raising $350 million. Let’s see that money go more toward our academics and less toward party favors.

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