FAMU students need to be more engaged


At this week's Board of Governors meeting in Orlando, Florida A&M University did not receive new state funding due to low performance scores.

The Performance Based Funding model has four guiding principles: 1) use metrics that align with SUS Strategic Plan goals, 2) reward excellence or improvement, 3) have a few clear, simple metrics, and 4) acknowledge the unique mission of the different institutions.

The top three performing schools in Florida’s State University System are University of Florida, Florida International University and Florida State University . These schools already have a lot of funding and will receive additional funds from the state.

This is outrageous because FAMU desperately needs more funding for resources, to hire faculty and open more classes, but because of Florida’s performance-based funding metrics, today FAMU was allocated $0 from the state for placing second-to-last among the bottom three schools.

Of course many will say that FAMU is treated poorly because we are an HBCU. That is true but what can we do to overcome this? We as students at FAMU are the biggest stakeholders and we cannot sit around and be complacent about what's going on.

It is time for FAMU to wake up and realize that we must fight for this historic institution that's been here for over 130 years.

We as students must attend these meetings and stay informed about what's going on with our university. We pay for classes but some students don't even go to a board of trustees meeting or stay up to date with decisions being made by the Board of Governors. We should stay informed about the various changes in government and how it affects this institution we attend.

Although we didn't receive money through the performance- based metrics system, there was one positive note. FAMU President Larry Robison sent an email stating “FAMU achieved its highest score since the SUS implemented the model. Despite the improvement in several key metrics, FAMU’s score was not sufficient to receive additional performance funding, but it was well above the level required to retain approximately $14 million in base funding.”

I have faith that Florida A&M University will continue to excel. We must continue to advocate for our school so that FAMU can keep providing an excellent education for students.