UT seeking 2 percent increase in tuition in 2018, and again in 2019

5:54 p.m Monday, Dec. 4, 2017 Local
Ralph Barrera
Students walk by the Gregory Gym Plaza at W. 21st St. and Speedway in May. RALPH BARRERA/AMERICAN-STATESMAN

The University of Texas has asked its governing board to raise tuition and fees by 2 percent next fall and another 2 percent in fall 2019, for a total increase of $210 per semester on top of the current charge of about $5,200 for undergraduate students from Texas.

The increases are needed to keep up with inflation, to offer competitive pay for faculty and staff members, and to address deferred maintenance of laboratories and classrooms, UT President Gregory L. Fenves said in an email to the university community Monday.

Most students attend the fall and spring semesters each academic year, which means that the proposed two-step increase would lift their annual academic charges by $420 to about $10,820 from the current $10,400.

Most graduate programs would also see a 2 percent boost in academic charges followed by another 2 percent boost, with larger increases for professional graduate programs in pharmacy and business, Fenves said.

Undergraduates from Texas would wind up paying $104 more per semester starting next fall and $106 more on top of that in fall 2019. That would raise academic charges to about $5,304 per semester the first year and to about $5,410 the second year.

The UT System Board of Regents voted 5-3 in February 2016 to raise tuition and fees at the Austin flagship by $152 a semester in the fall of that year and another $152 this fall. Before that, the university had not seen an increase since 2012, although the regents provided the campus with an extra jolt of funding from the higher education endowment they oversee in lieu of a tuition increase.

The regents are scheduled to consider tuition proposals when they meet in February, said Melanie Thompson, a spokeswoman for the 14-campus UT System.

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