ABOR approves ASU tuition proposal with no in-state increase

Out-of-state, online and international students could see up to a 5% tuition increase, according to President Michael Crow's proposal

The Arizona Board of Regents passed the University's tuition and fee model, keeping ASU in-state tuition the same and allowing President Michael Crow more flexibility to fix out-of-state tuition rates as markets and student circumstances change over the summer months because of COVID-19.

The proposal, passed at a board meeting Thursday, says in-state students who attend classes in-person at ASU will not see an increase in their tuition. 

Crow's proposal also asked ABOR to approve a cap on tuition increase for out-of-state students rather than a set price tag like UA and NAU have. 

READ MORE: Crow proposes little to no increase for in-state tuition, outlines fee adjustments

The University has not increased out-of-state tuition yet, but if they do, the increase will not exceed 5%, according to Crow's proposal. All other students, including international and online, may also see a tuition increase.

A statement from ABOR Chair Larry E. Penley thanked university presidents for their adaptability to move classes online and to communicate with students in need at their respective institutions. 

Penley wrote that he was certain “this is not the time to raise resident tuition” given the unprecedented times caused by the new coronavirus.

"We have worked to keep our universities among the most affordable in the nation and will continue to do so for our students’ success, the future of our state and to build the workforce of tomorrow,” Penley wrote.

Base tuition according to the University's standard cost of attendance site says on-campus, in-state students paid $10,710 for tuition and up to $1,050 in college fees for the 2019-2020 school year. The standard meal plan price for on-campus students is listed at $5,174.

According to a presentation given at the board meeting and the standard cost of attendance site, out-of-state on-campus students paid $28,800 for tuition and the same amount as in-state, on-campus students for fees and meals for the 2019-2020 school year.

"ASU seeks the flexibility of determining actual charges for tuition and fees within the 5% range in order to manage the University in the new operational environment created by such events as the coronavirus pandemic," the executive summary of Thursday's meeting says.

For out-of-state students at one of the four main campuses, they may end up paying up to an additional $1,440. Freshmen and sophomores at the Polytechnic School and New Campus could end up paying up to an additional $1,296 and students at Lake Havasu City could pay up to an extra $518, according to a presentation given at the meeting Thursday. 

During a question and answer period, Crow said the proposed changes for cost of attendance relied on flexibility, so he and other administrators could take advantage of raising out-of-state tuition if they need to respond to changing markets. 

About 53% of revenue for ASU from fiscal year 2020 comes from tuition and fees. At NAU, the number is 40% and at UA, the number is 31%. According to Crow's presentation, 42% of the University's revenue for the fall 2019 semester was generated by the tuition and fees paid by out-of-state students. 

For online students, rates were also capped at a 5% increase, and students who paid $530 per credit hour during the 2019-2020 school year could pay up to an additional $27 per credit hour.

International students, who Crow said are an integral part of the University and the continuation of its charter and mission, could also see a 5% increase, making their tuition go up by either $1,560 or $1,404 depending on year and campus.

Out-of-state graduate students will see up to a 5% increase in tuition as well, adding up to $1,570 for domestic students and $1,680 for international students. If students are enrolled in an online graduate program, tuition could increase by $27 for the next school year. 

The University requested changes to graduate student fees for programs through the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, the School of Sustainability and the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions.

In addition to tuition and fees, the University proposed a 2.54% increase in student housing and a 3.5% increase in meal plans, increasing costs by $179 and $158, respectively. 

The Residence Hall Association at Tempe wrote a letter to ABOR at the beginning of the spring semester, voicing support for the increased dining rates. 

"We embrace the importance in building a community and acknowledge that the rates presented are necessary for the direction and development this institution hopes to work toward," wrote RHA Executive Director at Tempe Jailene Matrecito, a junior studying English and political science.


Reach the reporters at pjhanse1@asu.edu and follow @piperjhansen on Twitter. 

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