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Port: 'Economic impact' is not why we support public universities

North Dakota State University bookstore is seen here Friday, Nov. 23. Raju Chaduvula / The Forum

You know it’s time to kick off another legislative session when the North Dakota University System drops a report alleging billions of dollars in economic impacts from spending on the state’s institutions and from the spending of the students/faculty/workers at those universities.

The argument being, I guess, that the more we spend on higher education the more “economic impact” we get. It’s a handy political ploy from a bunch of academics who enjoy posturing themselves as though they’re above politics.

This session is no different. Yesterday the NDUS dropped a press release touting their latest study (conducted by two professors who work for North Dakota universities) claiming $5.3 billion in total economic impact.

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