University administrators approved a plan to raise in-state tuition by 15.6 percent after a heated debate Monday, leaving administrators and students alike dissatisfied.
And despite the fact that there is now a resolution ready to be presented to the Board of Trustees, the immediate future of tuition hikes is still up in the air.
Even those who supported the approved plan, presented by Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Bruce Carney, voiced strong reservations.
Sallie Shuping-Russell, chairwoman of the Board of Trustees’ budget, finance and audit committee, said she “vehemently” disliked both the plans presented by Carney and Student Body President Mary Cooper.
Cooper, who proposed increasing in-state tuition by 6.4 percent, supported filling the outstanding budget gap with a two-year supplemental hike of 5 percent for incoming in-state students.
Carney’s plan levies a $2,800 increase on all in-state students over five years. It would also increase tuition for out-of-state students by 6.5 percent — $1,622 for undergraduates and $1,460 for graduate students.
Ultimately, the tuition and fee advisory task force chose to approve Carney’s plan by a vote of 9 to 5, with every student on the committee voting against it.
The proposal now moves to the Board of Trustees, where trustees say every option to cope with the more than $100 million in state funding cuts — including Cooper’s proposal — is on the table.
“It’s possible that either of (the proposals), or a combination of them, or something that’s different from their proposals will come up,” said Wade Hargrove, chairman of the board.