Student Senate approves 2 percent tuition increase

Jelan Buchanan, Staff Reporter

The Student Senate passed a tuition increase, grant-in-aid increase and apportionment board allocation in the amount of $409,997 during Wednesday’s remote meeting.

Paul McCann, Vice President for Business Affairs, said the university is asking for a 2 percent tuition increase for incoming students, meaning it would rise by $6.

McCann said students who enrolled in 2020 would remain at $302, those who enrolled in 2019 would stay at $296, those who enrolled in 2018 would stay at $292 and those who enrolled in 2017 would stay at $289.

“Non-resident students, they will also receive a 2 percent increase. They are not covered by the guarantee in the same way, but their rate is at a one and a quarter times the instate rate. Their increase will be $7 and five cents for new students,” McCann said.

The resolution states that non-resident students who enrolled in 2020 would stay at a rate of $378, those who enrolled in 2019 would stay at $370 and those who enrolled in 2018 would stay at $365.

McCann said that the rates would also increase for all graduate students.

“In-state residents receive a 2 percent increase and would go from $306.50 to $312.63, a $6.13 increase, and a nonresident is 2.4 times an in-state resident, and their rate would go from $735.60 per credit hour to $750.31, an increase of $14.71,” McCann said.

McCann said that this increase is in line with inflation, and it will bring in $460,000 for the university.

Lynette Drake, Vice President of Student Affairs, said that when Eastern does an increase for housing, it usually also increases the grant-in-aid fee as well.

The Student Affairs Office is asking for an 81-cent increase per credit hour to the current grant-in-aid fee of $16.24 per credit hour for the 2021 fiscal year, totaling $17.05.

She said this fee will provide funding for student scholarships.

“Our housing rate is still the lowest in the state, and our tuition and fees are still the lowest in the state. Our overall increase to tuition and fees is 1.22 percent and 1.7 percent when you add in housing,” Drake said.

She said the Student Affairs Office kept affordability in mind when asking for the increase.

“I reviewed all the budgets for all of the departments that are funded by student fees, and last year we really needed to come before Student Senate to request fees, and I decided that we needed to hold off one more year,” Drake said.

Claude Abdoulaye Pedila, Vice President of Student Affairs, said passing the senate bill for next semester’s total budget allocation is necessary so that all funding boards can go about their regular business.

The bill states the apportionment board recommends student government to release $409,997 for the 2020-2021 school year.

Apportionment board will receive $40,520, student government will receive $41,273, the university board will receive $136,533 and the Student Recreation Center will receive $191,671.

Jelan Buchanan can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].