It’s interesting to see a complete portrait of higher education spending by state over the past five years. It’s no real surprise that Louisiana is in the top three … for slashing spending on higher education. The graph tells the tale:
There is a concomitant graph of those states that actually increased funding:
The increases in funding are fantastic, but were I in a position to look for a future home, I would concentrate just as much on those states that despite the profound economic downturn actually managed to protect, as best they could, higher education.
What’s interesting here is that the changes, in direction or lack thereof, are not really regional in nature. I would have, for example, only have paired Arizona and Louisiana as likely to be in the top tier because both states have taken a decided right turn in the past few election cycles. (In Louisiana, we have a governor who longs to be president, on the one hand, and who, on the other hand, seems to be at the beck and call of a group of legislators who seem to want to roll back Louisiana to the antebellum period where there is an elite group of monied individuals who call the shots and everybody else can just be thankful they are alive.