How will Florida State ensure that multimillion-dollar grants from Kansas billionaire Charles Koch won’t warp our education?

This was the question posed by Florida State University student activists Jerry Funt, Gladys Nobriga, Lissa Reed, and Ralph Wilson in a column at Tallahassee.com 

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Between 2007 and 2011, the Kochs gave $30.5 million to 221 universities  through their charitable foundations creating potential conflicts of interest for the universities accepting their donations.

Kent Miller and Ray Bellamy, in the May-June 2012 issue of Academe, wrote about the Koch influence in the Florida State University economics department. The Charles G. Koch Foundation offered to give the university $1.5 million to hire two assistant professors and fund fellowships and undergraduate curriculum on free-enterprise topics. The foundation appointed an advisory board that would award money to faculty and make sure that the work they completed fit with the foundation’s mission. Miller and Bellamy wrote, “In exchange for his ‘gift,’ the donor got to assign specific readings, select speakers brought to campus and instruct them with regard to the focus of their lectures, shape the curriculum with new courses and specify the number of students in the courses, name the program’s director, and initiate a student club.”

FSU Progress Coalition Facebook page.  

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