Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Students face tuition hike

UW-Madison students are facing an 8.4 percent tuition increase for the 2001-02 school year, UW System President Katharine Lyall announced Monday.

Lyall announced tuition increases for all UW schools, 24 of which face a 7 percent increase. Madison and Milwaukee students will have an additional 1.4 percent added to help fund the Madison Initiative and Milwaukee Idea, which are education enhancement programs that fund faculty recruitment and retention.

Out-of-state students face a higher increase of 10.4 percent to $15,630 per year. For in-state undergraduates at Madison tuition will be $4,085 per year, room and board will cost an additional $4,823.

Lyall said the increases — which are consistent with previous years — are necessary because of the proposed funding coming from the state budget.

“These increases are consistent with the moderate tuition increases of the past decade,” she said. “Among the public Big Ten universities, the annual increase at UW-Madison for the coming year is third smallest. This follows a year in which tuition has been frozen system-wide for resident, undergraduate students. Despite these increases, tuition in the UW System remains affordable, and our commitment to a high degree of student access remains strong.”

Among other Big Ten schools, Illinois students will have the largest increase of $686 per year. The average among all the schools is $319 and at Madison it will be $278.

The Board of Regents will meet July 12 to discuss and possibly pass the tuition increase. However, the Regents are working off of a proposed state budget that hasn’t been passed yet. Both the Senate and Assembly have passed their versions of the budget and currently they are working out the differences between the two, which includes a disputed extra $60 million in funding for the UW system.

This is the third time the Regents have had to set tuition without a state budget. Traditionally, tuition is set in July so tuition bills can be sent to students before classes begin in September.

The UW operating budget for the upcoming year will be $3.351 billion, one third of which is funded with state dollars. Tuition adds another 16 percent and 51 percent comes from other sources such as room and board and gifts and grants.

Should the university get even less than the $6.345 million it is expecting, the Regents will be asked to authorize Lyall to provide a supplemental tuition increase plan that could increase tuition even more. However, Lyall does not expect that to happen.

UW-Madison Chancellor John Wiley said he is torn on the tuition increases.

“Our tuition is currently second lowest in the Big Ten, so I do firmly believe our tuition is comparatively a bargain,” Wiley said. “At the same time, I believe in access and affordability to public schools, and I would not like to see our tuition [continue to escalate.]”

Wiley said the increases are not the university’s fault, as the Legislature cuts back the amount of funding, tuition will have to make up the difference.

UW-Madison senior Michelle Kotecki isn’t too upset over the increase.

“It could be worse,” she said. “Considering we are the second cheapest in the Big Ten and for the education we get at Madison, I don’t think the tuition increase is that bad.”

However, United Council President Matt Fargen said he is afraid that the access to education will go down as tuition increases, and the university should not make up the need for additional money through tuition.

“The university shouldn’t balance the budget on the back of students and their families,” he said. “I think it is important to ask why tuition goes up so much and inflation doesn’t.”

Fargen also said if tuition is going to go up, there should be a comparable increase in the amount of financial aid given to students.

Wiley said he is working to level the field for students with scholarships, financial aid and private funding.

Last year undergraduate tuition was frozen because of the 9.6 percent raise the year before. In 1998-99 tuition went up 5.1 percent, 6.9 percent in 1997-98, 5.2 percent in 1996-97 and 5.3 percent in 1995-96.

In addition to the tuition increases, Lyall announced some cuts in the UW System such as keeping administrative jobs unfilled. Lyall also wants to phase in a 4.2 percent pay increase requested for faculty instead of giving the money all at once.

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