State 29 responded this morning:
The Madman doesn't even offer any debate on the matter: Doak is right, I'm wrong. Case closed. He ignores the fact that the University of Iowa has record numbers of students this semester and that ISU and UNI are barely off recent peaks in enrollment.
Why should Iowa taxpayers subsidize what basically amounts to a bunch of rich kids from suburban Chicago who are too dumb to get into Northwestern or the University of Illinois? On the hopes that they'll stay here after 53% of them graduate with an undergraduate degree after six years? Come on, Madman, you can do better than that.
I looked back at it this morning, and he's right, I can do better. I was having an off day yesterday and offered a crappy argument, let's see if I can build a better one today.
My best friend: Came from Wausau, WI for college, studied pharmacy, works in pharmacies, will graduate and continue to work as a pharmacist.
My girlfriend: Came from Appleton, WI for college, studied pharmacy, works in pharmacies, will graduate and after a year out of state for a residency, will return to pursue a career here in Iowa.
Me: Came from Woodruff, WI for college. Enrolled as an open-journalism major, switched to newspaper, then switched to Radio/TV production, considered three other major changes, worked in radio, tv, print, retail and a variety of other jobs, and eventually settled in politics. Pursuing a career here in Iowa.
Those are three of several examples of people in my inner circle who came from other places to go to college in Iowa, and have decided to stay. Admittedly, all three of those examples came from Wisconsin and attended Drake, but I'm sure it's happening with people from other places at other schools in Iowa as well.
State 29 says only 53% of enrolled students at the state universities will graduate with a bachelor's degree. That's true. He refers to out-of-state students at our universities as "a bunch of rich kids from suburban Chicago who are too dumb to get into Northwestern or the University of Illinois." That's not true. Students come from all over the midwest to go to school in Iowa. Many, if not most, of them do more than get drunk and stoned here.
So, I'll acknowledge that some students will come to Iowa and fail to get a degree. I'll acknowledge that some will come, get an education and leave. And I'll even acknowledge that some will be drunks and stoners. But some of them will succeed, and some of them will spend the rest of their lives here. And even if it is a risk, I'd rather invest in new Iowans than new corporations.