The cost to attend West Virginia University will go up by the lowest percentage in at least two decades with Friday’s approval of a $60, or 1.36 percent, per semester increase for in-state undergraduate students and $180, or 1.44 percent, for out-of-state students.
The exact individual tuition and fees approved by the Board of Governors will vary, depending on specific colleges, resulting in effective increases ranging from 1.26 percent to 1.69 percent for in-state students and 1.22 percent to 1.8 percent for out-of-state students. The only negative vote was by Isaac Obioma, who represents students on the Board.
The last time an increase was less than 2 percent occurred in the 2010-2011 academic year, which saw a rise of 1.9 percent.
The University will also increase financial aid by 4 percent, including an 8 percent rise in institution-funded aid.
“We are extremely sensitive to the increasing cost of higher education,” President Gordon Gee said. “While we are not able to hold tuition flat, our leaders did an outstanding job of coming in at a very small number to maintain the University’s position as one of the best values in the country.”
Also Friday, the board approved budget parameters for the fiscal year beginning July 1 that include an overall $14.8 million reduction in salaries, benefits and supplies despite inclusion of state-mandated raises effective Jan. 1, 2020. Part of the reduction will include a targeted voluntary separation plan.
A final budget will be presented at the next Board meeting, scheduled for June 21 in Beckley.
“We will work to realign expenses and implement strategic budget initiatives to meet the target reduction, i.e. through attrition, not filling vacancies, and other reductions in expenses,” Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Paula Congelio told the board. “WVU continues to explore and implement many other strategies and tactics to keep overall costs low so that any tuition/fee increase is as low as possible and to allow for additional investment toward strategic priorities in teaching, research, and service at the University.
“We also must continue to look at other ways to make higher education more affordable through continued efforts to add predictability to the costs of obtaining a degree,” she said.
Graduate tuition will increase $72 or 1.44 percent for in-state students and $189, or 1.47 percent, for out-of-state students.
Additionally, residence hall rates will be increased about 3 percent to cover increased costs for goods and services, depending on location. Cost for most apartments will be unchanged; parking at some of the units will increase in some locations.
A revamped meal plan will also be launched for 2019-2020, with new options, including “anytime dining” in response to students’ desire to be able to eat smaller meals, more often. Prices range from a high of $2,616 per semester for the top-tier plan – $25 less than the current option – to $895 for the lowest.
In Beckley, the undergraduate increases are: $48, or 1.29 percent for in-state; $132, 1.42 percent, for out-of-state. However, the nursing will have an effective increase of 8.25 percent to align the cost across all three campuses.
In Keyser, the undergraduate increases are: $24 to $60, or 1.07 percent to 1.42 percent for in-state; $84 to $96 or 1.48 percent to 1.51 percent.
A detailed chart of tuition and fees will be available by Wednesday at https://admissions.wvu.edu/cost-and-aid#tuition-fees.
CONTACT: John A. Bolt
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