The University of Pikeville in Pike County is a private university. But Beshear says the school meets an important regional need, and a case might be made for adding it to Kentucky’s public university system.
Governor’s spokeswoman Kerri Richardson says the study will look into the benefits and detriments of adding the University of Pikeville to the state system.
“That’s one of the things we hope the study will illustrate: whether or not it would be advisable and feasible for Kentucky taxpayers at this time to add on an additional school and what kind of impact that may have on other existing state institutions,” she said.
The Council on Postsecondary Education will be assisting in the review. But because former Governor Paul Patton—who is also the president of the University of Pikeville—serves on the CPE, Beshear is seeking an independent firm to conduct the study to avoid the perception of a conflict of interest.
Beshear plans to issue a request for proposals later this week. The study will be funded out of the governor’s planning budget, and is expected to take 6 to 8 weeks.