BOT approves AY 21/22 tuition increase

Corryn Brock, News Editor

The Board of Trustees approved a tuition increase for the 2021-2022 academic year during its meeting April 23. Students who are residents of Illinois will now be charged $315.74 per semester hour while students who are not residents of Illinois will be charged $394.68 per semester hour.

The resolution passed with all but one trustee, Michael Perri, voting in favor of the resolution.

“As the student trustee on the Board of Trustees, I’ve seen my vote as the collective vote of the students on campus. Because of this, I felt that my vote should try to reflect the student body as accurately as I’m able to do,” Perri said. “The best way I could reflect the opinions of the student body was to vote the same way that the Student Senate did.”

The Student Government did not support a tuition increase during their April 21 meeting.

This increase will only affect incoming students and not those currently attending the university, as students have a locked-in tuition rate while they complete their undergraduate degree.

The increase follows several years of continued increases.

Undergraduate students who are residents of Illinois and came in the fiscal year 2021 are charged $308.04, those who came in the fiscal year 2020 are charged $302, those who came in the fiscal year 2019 are charged $296.00 and those who came in the fiscal year 2018 are charged $292.

Undergraduate students who are not residents of Illinois and came in the fiscal year 2021 are charged $385.05, those who came in the fiscal year 2020 are charged $378, those who came in the fiscal year 2019 are charged $370 and those who came in the fiscal year 2018 are charged $365.

Incoming graduate students who are Illinois residents will see a $7.82 increase from $312.63 to $320.45 and those who are not Illinois residents would see a $18.76 increase from $750.31 to $769.07.

The increase will not impact Eastern’s standing as the university with the lowest total attendance cost.

The Board also approved an increase in housing and dining rates beginning in the Fall 2021 semester.

All trustees voted in favor of the increase, with the exception of Perri who abstained.

Perri said he did so because the Student Government has had an ongoing debate on increases in student fees.

“I felt that it was best to abstain from the vote because of an ongoing matter with regards to how the student senate gives its support towards fee increases,” Perri said.

The increases are as follows:

7 meal plan option, $4,550 to $4,677 (+$127)

10 meal plan option, $4,753 to $4,886 (+$133)

12 meal plan option, $4,932 to $5,070 (+$138)

15 meal plan option, $5,131 to $5,274 (+$143)

Unlimited meal plan option, $5,415 to $5,566 (+$151)

Adjusted usage charges will remain $850 per semester to use a double as a single and $450 per semester to use a triple as a double.

Summer room and board rates will have a 2.8% increase.

Four weeks in a single room increased $30 from $1,056 to $1,086 and four weeks in a double room increased $24 from $844 to $868.

Six weeks in a single room increased $44 from $1,583 to $1,628 and six weeks in a double room increased $35 from $1,266 to $1,301.

Eight weeks in a single room increased $59 from $2,112 to $2,171 and four weeks in a double room increased $47 from $1,685 to $1,732.

University Apartments and University Court will not see increases aside from summer rates in University Court which will see an across the board $90 increase for all room options and no increase for adjusted usage.

The Board also approved fee adjustments for the union/bond revenue fee, athletic fee, Lantz/O’Brien Operations fee, student recreation operations fee and grant-in-aid fee. All were approved.

Perri moved to separate the vote for the athletic fee from the other fess for voting.

All fees but the athletic fee were approved unanimously. Perri voted no on the athletic fee due to the Student Government tabling a vote to support an increase in the athletic fees.

“Ultimately, as a trustee, I should support the decision that the board makes,” Perri said. “I felt that the rest of the board should know how students feel about these matters, and hopefully, the way I voted did just that.”

The rate increases are as follows:

Union/Bond Revenue Fee; $29.82 to $33.78 (+$3.96)

Athletic Fee; $13.00 to $13.78 ($0.78)

Lantz/O’Brien Operations Fee; $5.50 to $6.88 (+$1.38)

Student Recreation Operations Fee; $5.79 to $6.79 (+$1)

Grant-in-Aid Fee; $17.05 to $18.07 ($1.02)

A collective bargaining agreement for the Teamsters was approved.

The Teamsters will receive a one percent across the board increase and a one-time sign on bonus of $250. The total cost of the increase is $8,059.

A deferred compensation plan was approved so the university is compliant with Illinois pension code. According to the state’s deferred compensation plan, the plan is “a supplemental retirement plan for State employees.”

The board approved on a four-year contract for recently hired Head Men’s Basketball Coach Marty Simmons. His base salary will be $165,000 with the ability to receive up to $35,000 in additional compensation depending on the revenue generated by the team.

During a press conference April 1, Simmons said he is looking forward to the position.

“I didn’t grow up here, but in a lot of ways this does feel like home to me,” Simmons said. “And it feels that way because of the experiences that I’ve had when I played in Lantz gym and when I stayed in Charleston, Illinois. Those fans would come out and watch us play and support us, not only in the Christmas tournament, but in the super sectionals as well.”

Six individuals were approved for tenure, including:

• Holly Farley, Assistant Professor and Interim Chair, School of Nursing

• Gabriel Grant, Assistant Professor, School of Technology

• Cliff Karnes, Assistant Professor and Chair, Department of Educational Leadership

• Heidi Ramrattan, Assistant Professor, Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences

• Jennifer L. Stevens, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminology

• Nan Wang, Assistant Professor, School of Business

According the Board’s reports, tenure is “a cornerstone of the academy. Tenure is awarded in an academic department and connotes a relationship of continuing commitment between the University and the faculty member including continuous employment at the University until resignation, retirement, layoff, or termination for adequate cause.”

The board also selected the next chair, vice chair, secretary and member pro tem. The terms are for one year.

Joyce Madigan was selected for chair. The votes were done via secret ballot and one member abstained from voting.

Phillip Thompson was selected for vice chair with Perri abstaining from voting.

Audrey Edwards was selected to be the Board’s secretary via secret ballot. There was one abstention.

Current Chairperson Barbara Baurer was selected to be the Board’s members pro tem with two abstentions, one from Baurer and one from Perri.

The summary of purchases ranging from $100,000 to $249,999 included:

• Textbooks from Sage Publications Inc., $110,000

• Textbooks from MacMillan Holdings LLC, $200,000

• Textbooks from WW Norton and Co., $125,000

• Textbooks from McGraw-Hill, $400,000

• Textbooks from Cengage Learning, $400,000

• Textbooks from Pearson Education, $500,000

• Textbooks from John Wiley and Sons Inc., $110,000

• Textbooks from MBS Textbook, $100,000

• Library books from Gobi, $130,000

• A copier fleet from Konica Minolta Business Solutions, $200,000

The Board will meet June 25 for their next meeting with a board retreat the next day.

During the Fall 2021 semester the board will meet on Sept. 10 and Nov. 12.


Corryn Brock can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]