CMU trustees hold the line again with conservative tuition increase

CMU 12th lowest of 15 Michigan public universities in total cost of attendance
CMU Board of Trustees May 2014 meeting

With a continued commitment to keeping higher education as affordable as possible for students and families, the Central Michigan University Board of Trustees today contained its 2014 tuition increase to 2.94 percent.

CMU has had the lowest cumulative increase in tuition among all state universities the past four years.

“We contemplate tuition rates with a deep sense of responsibility,” CMU President George E. Ross said. “We continue to make internal budget cuts to keep tuition as low as possible. Our conservative financial management allows greater investment in students while protecting affordability and access.

“Despite the fact that 11 of Michigan’s 15 public universities receive more state funding than CMU, our administrative spending per student is the lowest, and our percent of core expenditures dedicated to instruction is the highest,” he said.

Undergraduate tuition will be $385 per hour starting this fall. Trustees also established tuition rates for graduate, doctoral, College of Medicine and Global Campus students.

“A commitment to adopting the lowest tuition increases in the state and having one of the best room and board rates makes CMU the 12th least expensive university among the 15 Michigan public universities in total cost of attendance,” said Barrie Wilkes, vice president of finance and administrative services.

“Additionally, CMU students do not pay separate fees for things like athletics, student government, a university newspaper, or student activities, as their peers at many other universities do.  CMU also charges just one undergraduate rate, rather than increasing tuition for higher-level classes or various degree programs.”

In his opening remarks to the board, Ross noted that state support of CMU students and families was at $90 million in 2001-2002. Today, that figure is $73 million — $17 million less, despite comparable enrollment, inflation, increasing technology and a host of other variables that provide a quality academic experience.

Trustees also set room and board rates for the upcoming year, approving a 2.76 percent increase. Under the new rates, a standard room and full meal plan will increase from $8,544 to $8,780 per year. CMU’s room and board rates are among the lowest in the state.

In other board action, trustees:

  • Established a doctor of education technology degree to meet a growing demand in academia and industry;
  • Changed the name of the political science department to political science and public administration;
  • Approved a list of nearly 3,600 students who will graduate this month; and
  • Heard from President Ross, who recognized the accomplishments of several students, including the top sales students in America — from CMU — as well as Sarah Alm of Mount Pleasant and Ben Harris of Allen Park, both recipients of prestigious Fulbright awards. Text of the president’s full comments can be read here.

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Steve Smith
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