UO, Portland State University May See Double-Digit Tuition Increases


The University of Oregon (UO) and Portland State University (PSU) are reportedly considering double-digit tuition increases this fall. This is expected to affect over 24,000 in-state students.

Last week, the University of Oregon's governing board approved a motion to increase in-state tuition for undergraduate students by 10.6 percent this fall. Oregon Live reported that this is the largest increase since the 2010 school year. Moreover, Portland State University could also be having a similar increase.

The increases for both schools would mean that each full-time student would need to shell out hundreds of dollars. A full-time student at PSU would need to pay an estimated $700 a year more for tuition, at $7,722.

Meanwhile, at UO, the annual tuition would increase by $945, making it a total of $9,855. On a positive note, neither tuition increase proposal include a potential costly rise to student fees or to the cost of food or housing.

UO President Michael Schill expressed his regret at the size of the increase. However, he and other presidents said that Salem, the state's capital, should be blamed.

Gov. Kate Brown proposed a budget that would cause flat-funding for the universities, with the same $667 million allocated in the 2015-2017 biennium. Oregon universities have asked for additional $100 million to prevent double-digit tuition increases.

PSU's president, Wim Wiewel, admitted that universities were caught in the middle. He revealed that, if the state would provide the $100 million, the higher education institutions would be able to keep the increase below 5 percent.

According to The Register-Guard, UO Chief Financial Officer Jamie Moffitt described the tuition increase as necessary because the state is still proposing to give the university the same amount as this academic year's. This is even when next year's cost are estimated to increase by $25 million.

One student, Maria Slade, who is a freshman, recounted her discussion about the tuition increase with her parents during winter break. Her father promised her that he would work until he's 70 years old so that she can continue her studies. However, it disheartened her because she does not want her parents to continue making sacrifices to keep her in UO when the institution does not seem to care about how the increase would affect its students.

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