June 19, 2014 at 11:03 pm

UM to hike tuition 1.6% this fall

With the raise, a full-time student who is a Michigan resident will pay $13,158. (David Coates / The Detroit News)

Resident undergraduate students attending the University of Michigan will pay $210 more for tuition next school year, following a 1.6 percent tuition increase approved unanimously Thursday by the Board of Regents.

The board also approved a 3.4 percent tuition hike for out-of-state students and a 2.4 percent increase for graduate students.

The changes mean tuition will increase to $13,158 annually for a full-time student who is a Michigan resident, and $41,578 for a nonresident.

“For them to hike (costs) up even more, it’s insane,” said Libby O’Connell, a Chicago resident who recently graduated. “Students have to pay so much to go to school.”

The increased costs are part of the university’s $1.79 billion general fund budget — which includes funding for 60-80 more faculty to reduce undergraduate class size, and $19.5 million more in undergraduate financial aid.

UM provost Martha Pollack, the chief academic and budget officer, said the budget reflects the university’s core values, emphasizing “academic excellence on the one hand and affordability and access on the other.”

The new tuition rate comes a year after the state’s flagship set tuition at 1.1 percent last year, the lowest in 30 years.

It also comes after state funding for public universities increased significantly for the first time in more than a decade. The $1.34 billion higher education budget increased 5.9 percent — nearly $80 million more than last year.

Set aside for UM is $295 million in state funding, a 5.7 percent increase over the previous year. The university will receive all of the funding since it did not exceed a 3.2 percent tuition increase cap to get the full amount.

Retiring President Mary Sue Coleman, presiding over her last Regents meeting, said the increase in state support is a positive sign on many levels.

“It may well signal the state’s reinvestment in higher education,” Coleman said. “This year’s budget is a positive indicator of the state’s turnaround.”

Several public universities have approved tuition costs for next year but UM is the first of the state’s Big Three universities to set rates. Michigan State University will approve tuition rates on Friday and Wayne State University will set costs a week from Friday.

kkozlowski@detroitnews.com
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