As reported in Wednesday’s News & Observer:
UNC system President Erskine Bowles has signed off on tuition increases for the coming academic year, an attempt to mitigate budget cuts recently imposed by the General Assembly.
What it means: Students at UNC-Chapel Hill and N.C. State University will pay $750 more in tuition in 2010-11, while N.C. Central University students will pay an additional $435.
In a letter to NC State faculty and staff today, Chancellor Randy Woodson wrote that, at NC State, the $750 increase is in addition to a previously approved increase of $150 for in-state undergraduate students and $200 for both graduate and out-of-state undergraduate students:
The total tuition increase for 2010-11 will be $900 for in-state undergraduates and $950 for all other students. . . .
In a separate letter to students and their families, Woodson wrote:
In an ideal world, we would have other options. But the simple truth is that after another deep budget reduction, tuition is the only way to hold off another round of eliminating course sections and classroom seats. With fewer seats and class sections, your time to graduation would slow down. Many students already have felt the effects of last year’s budget reduction and have shared their frustrations with me.
But even a tuition increase of this size is no silver bullet. NC State will still see about a $3 million budget shortfall. Our promise is to continue to protect the academic core to the extent possible and continue to do all we can to ensure students have the opportunity to make steady progress toward graduation.
We also will continue to be strong partners with the state in job creation and economic development to help ensure that there will be jobs available for you when you graduate.
It is important to note that even with this increase, NC State’s tuition remains lower than all but one of the schools on its peer list – and in most cases, by a significant amount. In addition, we will honor our historical commitment by setting aside 20 percent of the increase for need-based financial aid.
What is the current budget situation?
NC State will take a budget reduction of about $19.6 million as part of a $142 million reduction for the state’s university system. This is the second consecutive year of deep budget reductions. Recognizing that academic quality would continue to suffer, the legislature granted universities the ability to raise tuition by up to $750 in addition to previously approved tuition rates for 2010-2011.