This archived article was written by: Kelli Burke-Gabossi
Students continue to have to reach deeper into their pockets as the burden of paying for higher education shifts from mostly state support to student support. At USU-CEU, tuition and fees will go up almost 10 percent for the 2011-12 academic year.
Chancellor Joe Peterson consulted USU-Eastern students about the components of student costs at the Truth in Tuition hearing on Wednesday, March 16 from 2:30 to 3 p.m.
The legislature made a 2 percent cut to higher education this year. “We’re going to have to make painful reductions. And we don’t know yet what they will be or where they will be,” stated Peterson.
Among the main discussions were tier-one increases where the board of regents approves a percentage common to all institutions. The increase is projected to be five percent in Utah. Tier-two increases are proposed by the institution. They vary by institution and are projected to be four percent for USU (including USU-CEU)
Last year, general student fees were $200 per semester. They are estimated to increase to $225 per term.
Peterson explained reasoning for tuition increases, as well. The college receives tax money from the state and tuition dues from students. The ratio for USU-Eastern is approximately 20 percent tuition costs, 80 percent taxes. This means that for every one dollar a student pays in tuition, the state contributes four dollars. According to Peterson, this ratio of state funding is the highest in Utah.
Last year, tuition increased 8.9 percent. It will increase 9.7 percent this year. These numbers are not unusual compared to other universities and colleges around the state. Peterson mentioned that if enrollment increases, tuition revenue will increase. This also means that if enrollment decreases, it will decrease.
As for academic scholarships, two-year scholarships will still be honored according to the original commitment. Peterson reassured students, “We see you as partners. We are eager to do as good a job as we possibly can. We’re eager to save you and your families as much money as much as we can. We’re playing all the angles.”