Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Competitive Higher Ed needed

Colleges are interested in Mesa and that is a very good thing. Mayor Smith and the economic development department are looking into the feasibility of attracting universities to build a 24/7 presence in downtown, including a potential medical school.

This is great news for students not only in Mesa, but across the valley as well. For far too long Arizona has been in need of expanded competitive higher education options. For most students, their options appear to be limited to ASU, UofA, NAU, Grand Canyon or community college. Sure, there are other opportunities our there that we probably aren't naming, but the reality is, even if we named every school, they could probably still be counted on two hands.

Cities with far smaller populations boast significantly more higher education opportunities with mulitple private, religious, and specialty options available. Like we have said before ASU Polytechnic is nice, but maybe it is time to stand on its own. Why not a BYU campus in the community with the largest LDS population outside of Utah?

As we have said before, the biggest thing to remember is that this drive for higher education will not happen overnight. It will take some time, but Mesa is doing the right thing to cultivate these opportunities, even if they are faced with some skepticism. Mesa continues to strive to define itself instead of allowing the naysayers to do it.

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