Thursday, June 2, 2016

Walker should tie his own paycheck, not UW funding, to jobs performance measures

UW has consistently been a top-tier university; Walker has failed to invigorate Wisconsin economy

Gov. Scott Walker suggested he might be open to providing more funding to the UW System, but with a catch -- the funding might be tied to jobs performance-based measures.
Gov. Scott Walker is indicating he may increase funding for the University of Wisconsin System and technical colleges, possibly tied to performance measures.

Walker and the state Legislature previously tied a larger portion of technical college funding to performance in multiple areas, including placing students in jobs related to their fields and degrees awarded in high-demand fields.
The value of our universities and colleges, however, cannot be arbitrarily tied to what jobs graduates find themselves in after getting a diploma. A degree may be only one factor that those who are hiring may consider with an applicant.

Besides, there’s already a clear measurement of how valuable the UW System is to our state. The University of Wisconsin consistently ranks in the top 25 universities around the world. If that’s not good enough to warrant continued funding, then what is?

Of course, we could apply Walker’s standards to his own record on job creation. Besides failing to meet his jobs promise from his 2010 campaign -- which he amended to a BIG GOAL when it was pointed out he missed it -- Wisconsin is falling behind the rest of the nation on other economic measures as well.

We’re dead last when it comes to creating new startup businesses, for example. And a new report this week paints that stat into darker territory: what startups we DO create don’t tend to last long:
It would seem that young businesses aren't doing so well in Wisconsin, at least in relative terms. Of the 25 states with the largest populations in the U.S., the report ranks Wisconsin 23rd in terms of its entrepreneurial growth.
That’s due in part to the Walker administration’s original plan to poach companies (1, 2, 3) from other states rather than to cultivate new ones in Wisconsin. Trying to lure companies from other states using tax incentives and other methods, however, is an approach that is largely ineffective in creating jobs.

If Walker is to insist on a performance-based method for UW System funding, he should put his money where his mouth is and insist that lawmakers, like himself and Republican legislators, be paid on the same basis. Were that to be the case, I would imagine we’d see a fast change in rhetoric from this administration.

1 comment:

  1. "Our rules don't apply to us."- 21st Century GOP motto.

    Good work on this article, and there is another facet to this. What are these performance measures UW would be graded on? Bet they have a nice ALEC, "UW-Tech" tinge to them