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Wayne State University raises tuition for undergraduate, graduate students

Jennifer Chambers
The Detroit News

Wayne State University's Board of Governors unanimously approved a tuition increase of 3.9% for both undergraduate and graduate students on Friday.

The new tuition rate will result in a $15 increase per credit hour for lower-division undergraduates, officials said. The university also increased its commitment to financial aid, bringing total institutional support to almost $100 million.

WSU board Chair Marilyn Kelly said as the governing body of the university, officials are keenly aware of the financial burdens many students face.

"This is a decision not arrived at easily or without reservation," Kelly said in a statement. "We have committed the university to making its programs financially accessible to all, including those of limited means. We have not wavered from that commitment. We have provided financial programs to aid students."

Wayne State will finalize its university budget in the fall, officials said.

University officials say they remain hopeful the Michigan Legislature will increase appropriations to universities this year but is awaiting passage of the state budget.

The Old Main building on the campus of Wayne State University in Detroit on May 19, 2021. The Board of Governors unanimously approved a tuition increase of 3.9% for both undergraduate and graduate students on Friday, June 25, 2021.

Wayne State President M. Roy Wilson said WSU is the only Michigan public university that has not had its budget restored to fiscal year 2011 levels after significant cuts were made to higher education that year.

“No matter what the financial circumstances are, our priority remains the same,” Wilson said in a statement. “As stewards of the university, we will provide a high-quality education to as many students as possible, while continuing to feed the talent pipeline to ensure Michigan’s workforce and economy are strong in the years ahead.”  

Last week, the Michigan State University Board of Trustees raised tuition 2% and will phase in an annual student recreational fee starting next year. The board voted unanimously to raise room and board rates 1.95%.

The Friday approval of the increases breaks a four-year freeze on tuition and a two-year freeze on room and board at MSU. The tuition increase would average about $290 extra for incoming resident first-year students, raising tuition to about $14,750.

At the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, in-state undergraduate tuition will rise by 1.4% this fall but overall costs won't increase for the majority of students next school year due to added need-based financial aid, officials said.

The UM Board of Regents unanimously approved the new tuition rates as part of a $2.4 billion general fund budget for the Ann Arbor campus for the 2021-22 school year.

UM's tuition increase will hike costs for full-time resident undergrad students by $230 for those taking 30 credit hours annually, pushing tuition and fees to $16,178 a year.

Eastern Michigan University increased tuition by 3.3% earlier this month and Lake Superior State University increased tuition in March by 3.5%, according to the Michigan Association of State Universities.

Twitter: @jchambers_DN