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UW alumni group is showing the will to act

The time for action has come.

That’s the message being delivered by UW Impact, a nonprofit group of alumni that is mobilizing University of Washington graduates in a time of fiscal uncertainty for the UW and higher education in Washington state. The group, organized by volunteer board members of the independent UW Alumni Association, announced at a Dec. 22 news conference that it has hired political consultants Chris Vance (R) and Christian Sinderman (D). Neither are UW alums.

“We feel like if we don’t act now to create a public movement in support of the UW and higher education, tomorrow may be too late,” UW Alumni Association President Colleen Fukui-Sketchley told the Seattle Times in a front-page story that ran today.

The state’s budget woes have forced significant cuts to the UW’s state funding the past two years, and with tuition increasing by double digits each year the university reached a point where—for the first time—tuition brings in more money than state support. That’s a hard line for a public research institution to walk, and the UW Impact group is looking to raise awareness and empower alumni across the state.

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