Howdy, Advocates, and welcome to the post-runoff edition of our newsletter. The spring has been very busy around The Association, and it’s been great to connect with so many current and former students during Aggie Ring Day, the Spring Game, Muster, Commencement, Reunions, and at The Next Tradition. I was also privileged to lead the planning effort for one of the Advocacy Network's marquee events: Aggies on the Hill – our biennial trip to Capitol Hill.
In this edition of the newsletter, you will receive a brief summary of the most recent runoff elections – which resolved who would be the major parties' nominees in the fall. Of note, there were three former students competing in this stage, and two of these candidates won their runoff elections: Cody Harris ’06 (R-State House District 8) and Brad Buckley ’93 (R-State House District 54).
The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board also recently released its “Almanac” highlighting progress towards the goals of the 60x30TX plan. The university’s government relations staff is also busy at work on the formulation of the Legislative Appropriations Request. This process will help the legislative committees in Austin understand Texas A&M’s state-related funding priorities in 2019 and 2020.
At the federal level, the window is quickly closing on the potential for any major legislative action before election season begins in earnest this summer. While the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act seems stalled in the Senate, the U.S. House continues to press forward with its deliberations. In some positive news, recent national polling indicates that the perceptions of higher education may be changing. These trends – if they continue – should bode well for our legislative interests in both Austin and Washington, D.C.
As always, The Association of Former Students and the university appreciate your interest in these issues and great support for the cause of higher education. Many thanks to the new Strategic Engagement Intern, Addie Skinner '18, for her help in completing this newsletter. Whoop!
Thanks and gig ’em,
Dave Fujimoto ’17
Director of Strategic Engagement