University of Arkansas Raising Tuition

LITTLE ROCK, AR — If you want to get a college degree in Arkansas, it’s about to get more expensive.

The University of Arkansas Board of Trustees is set to vote on wide-sweeping tuition increases on campuses throughout the U of A system.

UALR is among the highest increases, at just under 5 percent, but the university told a committee on Tuesday that they have to do it.

Finals week at UALR is usually among the most stressful times for students, that’s before you add a potential tuition increase this fall.

“If the benefits outweigh the extra cost, then I would understand. But otherwise, I don’t like it,” says student Katy Greene.

Greene is thinking green, trying to cash in on what she can for her books.

“I expect to get about $150 back, and I spent close to $900 this semester,” she says.

That’s a small slice from an expensive tuition pie.

UALR semester tuition sits at over $7,300, and the requested increase would tack on another $49 per student per month.

“If they’re going to increase my tuition I would prefer to receive information on why and where my extra money is going and how it’s going to benefit me,” Greene says.

If this sounds familiar, it is. Tuition has increased at UALR by an average of nearly 5 percent each of the last five years.

“I don’t think there’s any reason to be optimistic, so that’s a great concern,” says UALR Chancellor Joel Anderson.

Anderson says a primary reason is because state funding simply isn’t adequate for higher education, leaving students and consumers to pay more.

The tuition rates are going up because money from the state isn’t.

Over the last five years, state funding to colleges and universities has gone up by less than 1 percent, while the cost of running a higher education institution has gone up over 12 percent.

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