Governor's proposal ties tech college funding to job placement - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Governor's proposal would tie tech college funding to job placement

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MADISON (WKOW) -- While UW System schools could get additional state funds for job creation efforts under Governor Walker's next state budget, funding for Wisconsin technical colleges will be exclusively tied to job placement.

87 percent of Madison College graduates currently find a job in their field of study, but the school may need to raise that rate under Governor Walker's proposal.  It would tie 100 percent of state funding for technical colleges to their job placement rate by 2020.

"We're very willing to have a dialogue about tying our performance funding to those measures," said Terry Webb, a Provost at Madison College.

Money that comes directly from the state budget only amounts to about ten percent of overall funding for tech colleges.  But any loss of revenue would be costly, especially since the entire system took roughly a 20 percent cut in state revenue in 2011.

"To do that, it would be easier if we had a better funding stream," admitted Webb.

For the UW System, the Governor wants to provide $20 million that schools can put to use if they have an idea that can lead to job creation.

"A good idea to create stronger businesses, a good idea to create a stronger workforce.  To prepare more people for successful careers in science, engineering, technology and math.  To provide students in a variety of fields with more hands on experience," said David Giroux, UW System Spokesperson.

UW System officials also feel it can also create better paying jobs under a provision they asked for last year.  While the UW would still receive its money for employee salaries from the state legislature, it would let them set their own pay plan without approval from legislators.

"The quality of the work that we do, here at UW-Madison and everywhere else, relies on the quality of people that we're able to hire and that we're able to keep here," said Giroux.

Right now, UW officials say they trail competitors by an average of 18 percent when it comes to faculty pay.

27 News reached out to Assembly Speaker Robin Vos for a reaction to that proposal, but he was unavailable for comment.

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