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ASU President Michael Crow addresses effect of budget cuts in online forum

Michael Crow

ASU president Michael Crow addresses The State Press editorial board during a meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 25, 2014. (Photo by Andrew Ybanez)

ASU President Michael Crow said out-of-state tuition will most likely increase after the state-wide education budget cuts were signed by Gov. Doug Ducey in a university-wide forum for students to ask him questions.

Many of the questions asked in the forum, which was held on the Polytechnic campus and broadcasted to other campuses and streamed online, revolved around tuition and the cuts.

Once Ducey signed the “historically lean” budget of $9.1 billion for the 2016 fiscal year, university funding was cut by more than $100 million and state community colleges lost all their funding, which Crow addressed in an offhanded fashion.

“It is probable that there will be, as there has been in the past, modest adjustments to out of state tuition,” Crow said, before jumping to the “off-the-chart” number of out-of-state applications. “More people from around the country want to be here than we have ever experienced before.”

It is possible in-state students will see a tuition increase as well. Crow said the funding from states was used to keep tuition rates low for in-state students.

Tempe Undergraduate Student Government President Cassidy Possehl asked, “With the budget cuts affecting the institution, could you comment on the new revenue streams the university is pursuing to lessen the impact on tuition moving forward?”

“We are pursuing revenue in lots of different ways,” Crow said. “We don’t pursue revenue for the sake of revenue, we pursue students for the sake of education. Our revenue model is such that it helps us to have more resources to work. Our programs are a source of revenue for the university because our costs of delivery are lower than our costs of tuition. We’re trying to scale those things where quality can be maintained, revenue can be made high and we can take the rest of that revenue and invest it back into the university and pay for the rest of those programs that don’t pay for themselves.”

College Arts and Liberal Sciences Senator Issac Miller asked a question related to the progress in building out facilities in relation to the budget cuts.

“The Arizona Center for Law and Society is funded by the law school as well as philanthropy and the City of Phoenix,” Crow said. “Other projects in the works are dormitory renovation and replacement on the Tempe campus. That would be funded by a third-party, private sector. We are looking at a new research building. That will be on the Tempe campus, financed by the research itself.”

Crow said he does not plan to allow the cuts to slow the growth or progress of the University.

“As soon as we’re done with the turn, we will speed up and move forward,” he said.

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