Here’s a pertinent discussion in the New York Times: Have big state universities gone too far in recruiting students from out of state?

Several writers discuss the topic: It’s a response to declining state budget support, says one defender; it’s a bad deal for poor and racial minorities, says one detractor.

The University of Arkansas’s flagship campus in Fayetteville admitted more out-of-state freshman than in-state this year — about 52-48. It’s encouraged by a preferential tuition plan for nearby states (and some not so nearby, like Illinois with the rich Chicago market). Texas sends a huge number to Fayetteville, both for the cut-rate tuition and because the flagship campuses in Texas have highly competitive admissions.

New UAF Chancellor Joseph Steinmetz has said it’s an issue he wants to talk about.


The UA campus’ top official, Athletic Director Jeff Long, has said he loves recruiting “student athletes” in Texas. They play some pretty good ball in Lone Star high schools.

What luck. I’m reminded again of former UA student athlete Bart Hester, now in the state Senate. He’s already tried to extort silence from UA officials on gay rights with a threat of budget consequences. Lately, he’s talking about a 3 percent cut in the state’s already shaky  support (as a percentage of state budget) for higher education. Some things just float to the top.