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Release: Oct. 21, 1999

Regents approve UI tuition increase

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The Board of Regents, State of Iowa today (Thursday, Oct. 21) passed a 4.3 percent increase in student tuition for the University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and the University of Northern Iowa. The Regents also approved an additional 2.6 percent increase in UI student fees. UI President Mary Sue Coleman says the fee increase will be used to help improve various programs and instructional equipment.

The Regents’ action means in-state tuition and fees will increase $206, to $3,204 from $2,998 beginning with the 2000-2001 academic year. Out-of-state tuition will increase $720, to $11,160 from $10,440.

With the approval, student activities and services, such as student government-sponsored activities, recreational services, Cambus, and the student union will be funded from specific fees instead of tuition. Tuition money formerly budgeted for those student activities and services will be redirected to support academic programs, including student financial aid, a program to improve students’ writing skills and improvements to UI Libraries and instructional equipment.

Coleman’s plan calls for increasing mandatory fees by $154 over the next two years -- $76 for 2000-01 and an additional $78 in 2001-02. When fully implemented, the new fees will generate about $3.8 million a year to cover the costs of student activities and services, and will allow that same amount in tuition revenue to be applied to support academic programs and student financial aid.

"I’m very excited about the plan because it allows us to use tuition to invest in important improvements in our academic programs while at the same time maintaining support for important student services," Coleman says.

"This is in accord with the way other Big Ten universities provide funds to support non-academic student services. And even with the increases, the University of Iowa’s tuition and fees will remain the lowest in the Big Ten by a substantial margin."

In 1998-99, the most recent academic year for which there are comparison figures, student fees charged by public Big Ten universities ranged from $1,146 at Illinois to $202 charged at Iowa. For that same year, Minnesota students paid $616 and Wisconsin students paid $406.

This is how the UI wants to use the $3.8 million to improve academic programs over the next two years:
• $600,000 for student financial aid and financial aid services.
• $1.1 million to revitalize UI Libraries. That money will be used to expand library hours; to update library facilities, including furnishings; to hire full-time librarians in all collegiate branch libraries; and to hire specialists in electronic resources.
• $1 million for an initiative in comprehensive writing excellence that aims to maintain and enhance the UI’s reputation as "The Writing University." It will include efforts to infuse writing throughout the curriculum and to offer a certificate in writing for advanced undergraduate study.
• $1.1 million for instructional equipment. This initiative will improve student access to specialized equipment and instruments in teaching labs. It will also be used to improve computing access.