Oct. 29, 2008
Tuition and fees top regents agenda
by Anne Krapfl
Tuition at Iowa State for resident Iowans, both undergraduate and graduate, would go up 4.2 percent next year, under rates proposed to the state Board of Regents Oct. 29. Tuition for non-residents would go up 2.8 percent. Mandatory student fees -- which support services such as computers, health services, recreation services and student activities -- would go up a proposed 7 percent for undergraduates and 7.4 percent for graduate students.
So, for example, an undergraduate student from Iowa would pay $6,650 in combined tuition and fees next year, or 4.6 percent ($290) more than this year. An undergraduate student from out of state would pay $17,870, or $520 (3 percent) more than last year. Graduate students would pay a proposed $7,564 (resident) or $18,664 (non-resident) next year, increases of 4.5 percent and 3 percent, respectively.
Regent Jack Evans questioned the relatively low percentage increase for out-of-state students. President Gregory Geoffroy said Iowa State doesn't want to hurt its ability to recruit out-of-state students.
"We're dependent on them to keep our enrollment levels where we think they ought to be," he said. "It's important that we not price them out of the possibility of coming to Iowa State."
For the last four years, the board has used the projected Higher Education Price Index (HEPI) as a guideline in reviewing proposed tuition and fee increases. The projected HEPI range for fiscal year 2010 is 4.2-5.6 percent. Regent David Miles sought, and received, assurance that the board is not bound to approve tuition and fee increases that fall within this range.
While lamenting the high level of debt some ISU students face at graduation, ISU Government of the Student Body president Daniel Fischer called the proposed tuition increases "a gracious compromise." He told the board there had been a high level of student input in drafting the proposed ISU tuition and fee rates.
The regents will make a final decision on 2009-10 tuition rates at their next meeting, Dec. 10-11 in Cedar Falls. The board approves campus room and board rates in the spring.
The proposed tuition and fees packages include supplemental tuition for several groups of ISU students:
Assault policy review
The board adopted a set of guiding principles that the three regent universities and two special schools will use to review their polices on sexual assault and misconduct. Developed by a task force with representatives from all three universities, the guidelines include: components to be included in a policy, state and federal laws to be considered and some general suggestions for developing and enforcing the policy. In September, the board directed Iowa's three regent universities to develop common policies and procedures dealing with sexual assault that are consistent with standards and best practices in higher education. The process is supposed to wrap up by mid-December.
Green light for rec services
The board approved the program summary and proposed financing for ISU recreation services' renovation and construction plans. The proposal renovates space in Beyer Hall and State Gym, adds 92,000 square feet to the west side of State Gym and adds air conditioning to areas of the Lied Recreation Center. (See story)
More stadium improvements
The regents also gave their final approval to a second phase of improvements at Jack Trice Stadium and a project budget of $11.5 million. The work focuses on the east side of the stadium and will replace and expand the four buildings that house concession services and restrooms. Six new buildings, extending out over the berm, will widen the concourse and offer six concession areas, two guest services/first aid stations and six restrooms (four for women, two for men). This essentially mirrors the work done on the west concourse this past year. The work will begin at the end of the 2008 football season and wrap up by next September. The cost will be covered by a combination of private gifts and athletics department revenues.
The regents sold $25 million in academic building revenue bonds to partially finance construction of Hach Hall. This is the second of three scheduled bond sales that will generate funding for Hach Hall.
In other business, the regents approved Iowa State requests to:
Board of Regents members got their first look at ISU's proposed tuition and fees increases. Iowa residents would see an overall rise of 4.5 (graduate) to 4.6 percent (undergraduate); non-residents would pay 3 percent more.