Albany State University, the pride of Southwest Georgia, currently needs the support of all current students, alumni, friends of the institution, and supporters. Although we are currently facing some vexing economic conditions, it is unacceptable for our institution to have to suffer in the way that proposed budget cuts would cause our institution to suffer. ASU has faced great challenges in the past, but none of those past challenges have been able to sink the unsinkable ASU. It is time for us to act to preserve and protect our great university. Albany State University has given us so much and it is time for us to reinvest in our great university.
Unfortunately, we cannot sit back and wait to reinvest in ASU—we must do it right now! At this very moment, there are serious budget proposals in the Georgia state legislature that would fundamentally eliminate the Albany State University Graduate School, end all study abroad programs, eliminate three undergraduate programs, and cause numerous people working for our fine institution to become unemployed. I refuse to let these phenomena become realities. The harsh reality is, however, that without meaningful action and involvement from you, these terrible phenomena will become realities.
For those of you who are attending the institution right now, you do not have a choice but to act. Your institution is under attack and you need to respond right now! For those of you who have graduated from the institution, you need to respond right now because your institution is under attack! For those of you who are supporters and friends of the institution, you need to act today too because there is no better time to demonstrate your support for the institution than now. If you fit none of the aforementioned categories, and you just support higher education in general and/or minority serving institutions (like Historically Black Colleges and Universities [HBCUs]), then here is a golden opportunity for you to make a significant difference in the lives of so many people who have benefitted tremendously from this prestigious and meaningful institution.
In most of the works written by Abraham Joshua Heschel, a rabbi and man who marched on the front lines with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., they contend that it is not cowardice that is the worst phenomenon, but it is indifference to evil that is the worst phenomenon. When you think about all that Albany State University has done for you and countless others, it would be evil for us to allow the Georgia state legislature to cut our institution’s budget this dramatically.
Here’s what needs to be done immediately: contact your Georgia state House and Senate representatives and your U.S. House and Senators today, and tell them to make sure that Albany State University does not fall prey to any budget cuts, especially any budget cuts that would cut any programs at our fine institution. Let’s act today!
Antonio Maurice Daniels
University of Wisconsin-Madison