May 20, 2011 12:00AM
Pittsburg State University presented its tuition and fee proposals on May 19 to the Kansas Board of Regents for fiscal year 2012. If approved, the proposal would result in a tuition increase for full-time, undergraduate, in-state residents of $132 per semester. Campus fees would go up $25, making the total cost for those students $2,581.
"We continue to work to keep tuition and fee increases to a minimum, especially in these economically difficult times," said PSU President Steve Scott. "We've made a concentrated effort to reduce our expenses, while at the same time keeping our quality high. The end result is that, even with these proposed increases, the cost of attending Pittsburg State is still among the lowest in the region."
A comparison of tuition and fees among national, regional and MIAA institutions, shows Pittsburg State University remains among the most affordable. In addition, Pittsburg State continues to offer flat-rate tuition. This allows full-time students to pay a single rate, rather than per credit hour, which helps reduce the overall cost of earning a degree.
The need to increase fees and tuition was driven by a number of factors, including reduced state aid and a 15 percent increase for group health insurance. The current state budget proposal would result in a $687,000 reduction in state aid for Pittsburg State University.
"While we're grateful the cuts weren't any deeper than they were, the end result for Pittsburg State is likely to be a budget shortfall of about $2.1 million," explained President Scott. "We've taken a number of steps to help make up for the funding reductions, but the difficult work of fulfilling our educational mission with sharply lower state aid continues."
Steps taken over the past year include consolidating academic departments, eliminating administrative positions, reducing energy consumption and increasing private support.
Increasing enrollment from bordering counties in the Gorilla Advantage program has also helped Pittsburg State keep its costs affordable.
"We've seen a nearly 40 percent increase in the number of students attending PSU through the Gorilla Advantage program," said President Scott. "It continues to be a wonderful success, and has helped make Pittsburg State a truly regional resource for the Four-State area."
A special committee representing a variety of campus interests including students, faculty, classified staff and alumni conducts a tuition review annually. Their proposal is sent to the president, who makes the final recommendation to the Board of Regents.
If PSU's proposal receives board approval in June, in-state, undergraduate and graduate students enrolled full-time would see a tuition increase of 6.8 percent for the fall semester. Non-resident undergraduate students would see an increase of 4.2 percent, and non-resident graduate students would see a 5.1 percent increase.
The Board of Regents will take final action on the tuition proposal during their June meeting.