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Board of Higher Education approves tuition, fee increases at Utah universities and colleges

Mar 24, 2022, 2:14 PM | Updated: Jun 18, 2022, 8:52 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — Tuition and fees are going up for some of Utah’s colleges and universities this upcoming school year. The board of higher education met Thursday to approve their requests.

It comes at a time when students are facing heavy financial burdens.

Some board members worried students will have to make tough decisions, such as taking fewer classes, which means it will take longer for them to graduate.

Leaders of the higher institutions said they understand the realities and are trying to find that delicate balance of providing a quality education at an affordable price.

“The board and institution presidents continue to work to keep college as affordable as possible, without sacrificing quality,” said Harris H. Simmons, chair of the Utah Board of Higher Education. “We appreciate the work and collaboration of our institutions, their trustees, and their student leaders in this process. And we are grateful to the state legislature for their continued investment in public higher education, which has allowed us to keep the cost of attending college in Utah among the lowest in the nation.”

Here’s a look at some of the tuition and fee adjustments the board approved Thursday.

The rates apply to undergraduate students taking 15 credits per semester.

The range of increases varies from 4.8% at the University of Utah, where students will pay $471 more a semester, to Weber State University, which will see a 2.62% increase and students will pay $163 more, beginning this fall.

U. leaders said the pandemic has created a backlog of unfilled positions, so they would like to boost salaries to attract more candidates.

“As we understand the impact especially now with inflationary pressures and everything happening how can we keep student fees and tuition as low as possible while still taking care of the faculty and those that are teaching the students,” said Christian Gardner, chair of the University of Utah Board of Trustees.

The only institution not raising tuition is Southern Utah University, for the fourth year in a row.

However, they’re increasing student fees to pay for a student health clinic. They say students requested the services to help them manage their mental health.

Board member, Aaron Osmond, voted no on each tuition request. He said it’s irresponsible to do so at a time when the legislature approved $237 million in new funding for higher education and when inflation is high.

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Board of Higher Education approves tuition, fee increases at Utah universities and colleges