May 13, 2010

SIU Board of Trustees freezes tuition for 2010-11

by Tom Woolf

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- The Southern Illinois University Board of Trustees, meeting today (May 13) at the School of Dental Medicine in Alton, voted to freeze tuition for the 2010-11 academic year at the 2009-10 level. In addition, fees for students at SIU Carbondale will go up 1.8 percent.

Tuition for new SIUC undergraduates registering for 15 credit hours in the fall will be $3,645, or $7,290 for the academic year. The entering tuition rate is guaranteed to remain the same for all four years. Tuition for students from Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri and Tennessee is equivalent to Illinois residents’ tuition.

SIU President Glenn Poshard said the University “can’t continue to put the burden on the backs” of low- and middle-income families, noting that tuition increases totaled 139 percent in the past nine years.

“We are closing the door to a lot of kids who are qualified to come,” he said. “It is time to get back in alignment with what families are capable of paying. The question is whether to increase tuition and shut the door to more and more of those families, or keep the door as open as possible.”

Poshard noted that tuition increases over the past nine years were in response to declining state support. Adoption of the tuition freeze for next year “is consistent with our historical mission of access,” he said, adding that the same philosophy applies to the decisions made about student fees.

“I know there have been suggestions to cut existing fees, but we can’t go so far as to take this year’s fee structure and reduce it by additional dollars,” Poshard said. “We’re the only university in the state that has listened to our students. We see the plight of our families and we have done our best to keep costs as low as possible.”

Of 16 student fees at SIUC, only five will increase, with that increase totaling $56.14 for the academic year. Fees will go up for: S.M.B. Primary Care (Student Health Fee), $8 to a total of $430 (1.9 percent increase); S.M.B. Extended Care (Student Medical Insurance Plan), $28 to a total of $596 (4.93 percent increase); Student Center, $5 to a total of $265 (1.92 percent increase); Student Recreation, $3.14 to a total of $256.60 (a 1.24 percent increase); Facilities Maintenance Fee, $12 to a total of $408 (3.03 percent increase).

When tuition and all student fees are added together, the total cost for an undergraduate for the academic year will be $10,467.

Also, the rate for a shared room in residence halls will be $4,800 for the year, a 2.3 percent increase. The cost of a 19-meal per week plan in the residence halls will be $3,702 for the year, a 2.49 percent increase.

When combining tuition, fees and residence hall rates, total undergraduate costs for 2010-11 will go up 1.36 percent.

Tuition for graduate students also is frozen for the next academic year. Students enrolled for 12 credit hours will pay $3,936 per semester.