Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon announced an increase in the
maximum amount of money available through Access Missouri to lower and middle
income students. The increase is meant to help students who have
high academic potential but encounter financial difficulties. This overall augmentation
stems from Gov. Nixon’s concern about the economy in Missouri,
especially about budget balancing and the resultant challenges.
There are several possible impediments to helping students with
Access Missouri. As mentioned above, Gov. Nixon has to keep an eye on
his government’s overall budget while not letting disadvantaged students fall by the
wayside. Contributing too much to the students at UMKC and elsewhere in the state
might result in an awful mess.
The amount of each Access Missouri grant is based on a strict standard of academic and
extracurricular accomplishments. The critical question revolves around both
academic standards and the relative need of the recipient – how
much the student can afford with or without the grant money.
Another questions that arises is, especially with an increase in the overall
financial sum, are there political earmarks and supposed favors that end up
surfacing with the money?
Everyone hopes that Gov. Nixon is doing the best that he can
in terms of bringing the same quality of education that all students experience
at UMKC with people who have difficult needs.
If more money is made available, will academic standards be watered down to accommodate the new students
waiting in the resultant pipeline? Again, one hopes that the Government
of Missouri is smarter than the average bear, generally speaking, in that
the academic standards that need to be met for the accrued monies are still
more than adequately maintained. Having said such, that sentiment is often
easier said than done, so vigilance in terms of education standards would be
a bountiful plus.
Is there an impending political controversy about this extra allowance?
Are the students involved in this grant-making process aware
of the political fireworks that occur in this political and educational arena?
The political results have significant ramifications for
the student-in-waiting in terms of their exciting future at UMKC.