Archive for Friday, May 16, 2008

Proposed tuition increases revealed

May 16, 2008


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No tuition increase for four years ( .PDF )

The Rising Price of Tuition

In the past five years, tuition at Kansas University has doubled. It's gone up far faster than inflation, income and even the housing market. The LJWorld takes you beyond the numbers as it looks at the students and parents who have to pay for school and the professors that are made possible through the increases.

Other increases

Each state university proposed tuition increases of varying sizes. Below are the range of percentage increases for each university. The largest increase percentages are generally for nonresident undergraduate students.

¢ Emporia State, 4.9 percent to 6 percent

¢ Fort Hays State, 5.5 percent

¢ Kansas State, 1.9 percent to 7.4 percent

¢ Pittsburg State, 5.7 percent to 5.8 percent

¢ Wichita State, 5 percent to 5.9 percent.

— For the first time, Kansas University tuition and required fees next year could cost at least $7,000 for every student.

In proposing new tuition rates to the Kansas Board of Regents on Thursday, KU requested an 8.4 percent increase to its compact tuition rate - the rate paid by the incoming freshman class - and a 6 percent increase to all noncompact tuition rates. Those rates are paid by juniors, seniors, transfer students and graduate students.

The regents will act on the request at its June meeting.

"We are right smack in the middle of the Big 12," KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway said. "There are five Big 12 institutions that are higher and five that are lower."

He omitted private Baylor University, which charges higher tuition than all other conference schools. Hemenway also noted that tuition covers only 50 percent of the cost of providing an education for a Kansas student.

The balance is covered by state funds, research dollars, student fees and out-of-state students, who pay 130 percent of the cost of their education.

In addition to the 6 percent tuition increase, there was a 6 percent increase for course fees and a 12.1 percent increase of required campus fees - however, those fees are set first by Student Senate before going to the regents for approval.

KU also sought approval to implement a $25 course fee for the School of Social Welfare. If approved, only the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences will offer tuition at the base rate. Course fees are retained by the school that charges it.

The 8.4 percent increase to the tuition compact rate is based on individual increases that other students would pay over four years and averages out to a 7 percent annual increase. The tuition compact front-loads the rate to provide predictability.

The regents asked several pointed questions of KU leaders, including why their compact tuition rate increase was 2 percentage points higher than the inflation rate when KU based last year's increase on that inflation rate.

"I think we saw today examples of the complexity of this discussion," regents chairwoman Christine Downey-Schmidt said. "I think we're seeing some logical fallout from the difference between the governor's budget request and what the legislature approved."

The notion of charging more tuition because the legislature didn't approve the desired level of tuition increases didn't sit well with all regents, though.

"Do you think it pressures the legislature that every time they don't fund something, we'll pass it along to students?" regent Gary Sherrer asked.

Regent Donna Shank also objected to several university presidents who said they were going to revise their increase proposals because of the lower-than-expected appropriation.

"This isn't money that was taken away from you; this is money you never had," Shank said. "We're still getting more money; it's just not as much money as perhaps we might have all wanted."

Increases at the other five state universities ranged from 4.4 percent for resident undergraduates at Emporia State to 7.2 percent for juniors and seniors at Kansas State. K-State is beginning a process this year that will see students pay a higher rate for junior and senior classes than they do for freshman and sophomore classes.


BalkansHawk 10 years, 1 month ago

With the cost of higher education continuing to climb year after year, who will be able to afford a good education in the future? How many promising young adults are going to be weeded from the system because they (and their parents) don't have the financial means to continue their education beyond high school? Look how many college grads barely make enough money to support themselves, let alone support a family. In today's world, having a degree does not guarantee financial success. I believe that having a college education is important. That being said, the truth of the matter is that many intelligent and well educated people still won't reap the financial rewards that it will take to help subsidize their childrens' college educations.I love my children and hope that they are going to be able to go to college and enjoy the experience as much as I did. I just don't know that I will be able to help them pay for the opportunity.

Tony Kisner 10 years, 1 month ago

Reading further, look at Emporia State, what a joke only 4.9%, KU kicked their butt with a an 8.4%. KU rocks!Look if those little "educate the public" schools don't want to compete and ask for more cash, then KU should not gift them a basketball game each year.

ralphralph 10 years, 1 month ago

1 - The cost of attending any other university has nothing to do with what rate of tuition is reasonable and necessary at KU. This is the same hollow logic that politicians use to raise taxes -- point at your neighbors and claim not to be as bad as some of them. That is not to say that an increase is or is not warranted, it is to say, though, that the cost of other colleges cannot form the basis for a rational determination of the tuition rate at KU, and for Hemenway to trot-out that old horse is an insult to the KU community and the people of Kansas as a whole.2 - KU must be careful not to mistakenly assume that their only "competition" is other similar universities, as that is very short sighted. Their true competition is other sources of education ... for you student athletes, the main one can be described in three words: In Ter Net. The also list would include community colleges and technical schools, both public and private, e.g., DeVry. Traditional colleges would do well to ask themselves if their very existence, at least in present form, is not going to disappear in the not-too-distant future. It is possible to hasten that process and/or price oneself out of the market by raising costs without true justification.3 - Prestige is BS. You want prestige, name your daughter Muffy.4 - Pricing-out lower and middle income students is a mistake. Educational opportunity has been a great elevating force in the USA ... if a young person has some talent, and works hard in school, they can 'move up' and 'live the American dream,' etc. That notion may seem cliched, but it truly is one major quality that has separated America from so many other nations, where those who are considered 'low-born' are destined to remain in that status, regardless of talent and effort. Does that mean education is subsidized? Hell yes, it does; and that is one of the best investments of taxpayer dollars imaginable.5 - I love each and every one of you. Isn't this a wonderful day? Now turn off your computers, go outside, and play.

gccs14r 10 years, 1 month ago

So now a 4-year degree at KU is at least $56,000. That seems pricey, given the condition of the facilities.

Eric Neuteboom 10 years, 1 month ago

If I may be permitted to quote a little Jim Rome:"BOHICA buddy. Bend over here it comes again."

yourworstnightmare 10 years, 1 month ago

I agree with littlejohnny.Professors who have no external research funding should be given time to get some (say 5 years) after which point they are fired or demoted to lecturers.KU has too many lazy professors who teach and do nothing else, mostly concentrated in the humanities and social sciences. Many natural sciences professors teach and have externally-funded research programs, although the sciences should also be subject to higher research standards.

Hiroyuki Kato 10 years, 1 month ago

KU can beat UNC in basketball but isn't even a contender for UNC when it comes to academics. Raising tuition is inevitable for KU to get out of mediocre status and achieve top 25 among public universities. But before raising tuition, KU should revise the reward system or even eliminate tenure to re-emphasize teaching, not only maintain the pressure for publication but require faculty to subordinate their teaching to the quest for external funding.I know there are many professors sitting on tenure status and do no research. Increasing salary for those lazy professors at the students' expense is extremely unfair.State of Iowa and Kansas are demographycally similar. But the University of Iowa is far better than KU in rankings and research. I bet the legislature of Iowa cares more about education. Raising tuition isn't the only solution to improve quality of education. I just want KU to became a prestigious research university like UNC, UCLA or BigTen schools.

Evan Ridenour 10 years, 1 month ago

"Raising tuition is inevitable for KU to get out of mediocre status and achieve top 25 among public universities"Raising tuition won't fix the primary reason for the poor academic rating of the university. The university needs to start being more selective with who it admits. I am always amazed by how many people either don't care to be in class or are literally too stupid to succeed when trying (My made up statistic would be 90% of the undergraduate population in the liberal arts school and 65% of the undergraduate population in a professional school). Those two groups of people shouldn't be in college at all (try vocational schooling or no higher education at all) and the inclusion of those two groups will always turn KU into a third tier university.

jmadison 10 years, 1 month ago

Universities and academia should be subject to the same scrutiny and oversight as hospitals and medical care. The cost of higher education has been increasing at a rate far above the consumer price index for the past decade.

Sean Livingstone 10 years, 1 month ago

Harvard's Associate Professors are tenure-track.

JerkStore 10 years, 1 month ago

Where is Endowment in all this? The total assets of KU Endowment went up $200 million last year, so obviously, their assistance to students is not keeping up with what they receive in donations. What's the point of Endowment if they just hoard the money?

SettingTheRecordStraight 10 years, 1 month ago

Still a total bargain for students and ripoff for taxpayers. Their education receives a massive taxpayer subsidy.

BigDog 10 years, 1 month ago

Maybe the academic portion of the university should be judged more like the athletics portion ...... if you don't achieve a certain level a professor or head of department is fired ... much like coaches are.Would athletics teams perform the same if coaches were tenured and couldn't be fired?

Tony Kisner 10 years, 1 month ago

I agree with littlejohnny - prestige is really the value in education. Our State Tax Payer funded institutions need to compete in order to call themselves prestigious. Once you achieve prestigious status you can then separate yourself from others by pointing out that you indeed attended a prestigious university, (hence - yes I am a better person than you are). - Prestige and limited access should be the mission of Tax Payer funded Universities.

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