This archived article was written by: Emily Manley
At the Truth in Tuition meeting held Mar. 4, 2014, Chancellor Joe Peterson met with students, faculty and staff to explain how USU Eastern balances student tuition money and other funds to meet the school’s expenses. Peterson explained that because Eastern is located in rural Utah, there is a relatively small student body. This is what makes Eastern great, but it also causes financial strain. Fixed expenses such as a library, salaries and a cafeteria make running a college more expensive per student the fewer students there are.
State and federal appropriations make up nearly 50% of Eastern’s yearly budget, roughly 38% is generated by the college though various means, while tuition only contributes 11.3% which is the lowest percentage in Utah. State monies are becoming more difficult to come by and higher education state wide is being pressured to raise tuition to meet financial needs. In fall 2014 tuition will increase 5% (about $27) keeping Eastern the lowest tuition in the state.
As Eastern reaches the four-in-four goal and increases the student body to 4,000, the finances of the college will be much more sustainable while still maintaining small class sizes and the personal feel of a small town college.