Trustees | Costs

Universities hurt themselves by raising tuition

THE SOUTHERN   |  April 22, 2010 by Codell Rodriguez

A speaker at a conference on affordability in higher education set for today at Southern Illinois University Carbondale has criticized SIU and other public universities nationwide for being on an “unsustainable course.”

The American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA) issued a university report card in 2009 showing universities were hurting themselves with constantly increasing tuition rates, hurting students’ ability to pay for education. Anne Neal, president of ACTA, will speak at 10:15 a.m. at “Going Broke on Education: How Can we Make College More Affordable?”

The event was spurred by a report by the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute examining a lack of higher education state funding since 1997.

The ACTA report card found factors such as tuition hikes have increased by an average of 56 percent in five years. SIUC saw an increase of about 60 percent. SIUC Chancellor Sam Goldman said tuition rose as state funding decrease, though he said that was not necessarily the right move to make.

“That was an error we should not have compounded,” Goldman said.

He said the decision to freeze tuition for the 2010-11 school year was made because the students do not deserve to be the ones who deal with the lack of state funding.

“We can no longer look to students to make up the losses in state aid,” Goldman said.

David Azerrad, program officer for ACTA, said freezing tuition is definitely positive move.

“I would say it’s about time,” Azerrad said.


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