The annual University Lobby Day will take place at the Oregon Capitol Building in Salem on Thursday, Feb. 15. All seven public universities in Oregon will be lobbying on that day.
The day-long event is a chance for students, alumni and faculty to promote the University of Oregon, meet with legislators face to face, thank lawmakers for past funding and argue for additional funding in the next state budget.
Approximately 7 percent of UO’s funding comes from the state. According to ASUO president Amy Schenk, the money helps to lessen the impact of tuition raises.
“Next year, we’re still looking at a huge budget shortfall that we’re going to have to cover,” Schenk said. “We really need their support and efforts.”
The lobby day will consist of time for attendees to meet and ask questions of different legislators, as well as workshops that explain how students can advocate. After those workshops, people will be divided into small groups to talk with legislators. Food will also be provided.
A 12-passenger van will leave at 7:30 a.m. from the Ford Alumni Center to take UO students to Salem. The van will leave Salem at 4:15 p.m., and is expected to return to campus around 5:30 p.m.
All students are encouraged to attend, whether by taking the van or driving themselves.
Schenk says that legislators often love seeing students because students are the ones influenced by the money that the state is allocating.
“Seeing the impact that [the funding is] truly having and the amazing work that students are doing… that speaks a lot,” Schenk said. “It’s something that the university lobbyists can’t go and tell them about; [it’s] something only students can provide.”
You can sign up for University Lobby Day here.
Follow Kylie Storm on Twitter: @kmstorm99