- Associated Press - Saturday, June 13, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Students at the University of Nebraska will pay more in tuition over the next two years after the university’s Board of Regents voted to end a two-year freeze on in-state tuition.

The board on Friday approved raising tuition 1.75 percent in 2015-16 and 2.5 percent in 2016-17, the Lincoln Journal Star reported (https://bit.ly/1G1MfCk ) Saturday.

About $3.50 per credit hour will be added to tuition bills next year and $5 per credit hour the year after that.

NU President Hank Bounds told the regents that the tuition increases still keep the Nebraska university system’s costs below its peer institutions and fulfill the priorities of keeping the university affordable.

The $216-per-credit hour cost at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln was 28 percent below peer universities for this year. The Omaha and Kearney campuses charge 25 percent less than the peer-group average.

A typical undergraduate resident student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln paid $8,170 in tuition and fees this year. The annual average is lower at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, at $6,750, and the system’s Kearney campus, at $6,586.

The vote marked the first time since 2003 that regents have approved tuition rates for two years. Bounds said the two-year approach will allow better planning for both parents and campus administrators. The regents still would have the flexibility to adjust tuition for 2016-17, if needed.

University officials will need to cut about $8 million in spending over the next two years to meet the system’s budget. Each of the campus leaders will be responsible for making the cuts, including about $4 million at UNL, $2 million at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and $1 million at both the Kearney and Omaha campuses.

Bounds told regents that because 75 to 80 percent of spending is on faculty and staff, that’s likely where the cuts will be made. Cuts also could come from reducing operational and maintenance costs, he said.

“Each campus is a little bit different,” he said.


Information from: Lincoln Journal Star, https://www.journalstar.com

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