Utah State will look to set itself apart as one of the nation’s top research universities as funding faces further decline, said Michael Kennedy, vice president for federal and state relations.”Big schools who are known get bigger, and the small schools, who are not known, have a chance to die on the vine,” Kennedy said, indicating USU’s fortitude would come in the form of a one-of-a-kind research program. A lot of university funds come from state, local and private benefactors. However, a sizable portion of USU research dollars come from federal investments, Kennedy said. Of these funds, 10-15 percent of them come in the form of earmarks which are promoted by Utah’s congressmen, such as Sen. Bob Bennett.”We have enjoyed a great relationship with Senator Bennett, and he has been a great champion for our research,” Kennedy said. “We look forward to working with his successor and our entire delegation, in fulfilling our economically vital research mission.”
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With Bennett moving out of office, USU will be on the lookout for a new political advocate for the appropriation of federal funds. Bennett has been on the Federal Appropriations Committee for 18 years. Kennedy said the amount of earmark funding will definitely drop after Bennett is gone.