Murray State Students Change Date for March on Frankfort Against Higher Ed Budget Cuts

Feb 16, 2016

Credit Matt Markgraf, WKMS

UPDATE: The march is now set for Thursday, February 25. The event was originally scheduled for February 29, but organizers decided to change the date to a day when lawmakers would convene at 2 p.m. rather than 4 p.m.

A group of Murray State Students are organizing a march in Frankfort later this month in opposition to Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposed 9 percent cut to higher education funding.

Katherine Summerfield, a senior theater major from Louisville, organized the March for Education event, which more than 200 people have expressed interest in attending on Facebook.

The event took shape this week, just days after Murray State officials endorsed a student government petition calling for lawmakers to oppose the budget cuts.

Summerfield said she’s also coordinating with students from the University of Kentucky, Western Kentucky University and Kentucky State University.

“They’re concerned that it will lead to tuition spikes,” Summerfield said. “They’re concerned that their departments will be cut completely. They’re concerned that students will stop coming to Kentucky. They’re concerned about a myriad of things.”

KSU's president recently expressed concern that the budget cuts could threaten the existence of the historically black school.

Summerfield said MSU faculty have been supportive of the effort.

“Lots of faculty members have said, ‘I’m on the bus for this. I want to come, I will be there’," Summerfield said. "Other members have said, ‘I’m sorry, I can’t go, however I’m excusing my students. If you guys need gas money, I’ll pitch in.’”