Tuition increase at state universities up for final vote

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Following a four-hour board meeting, there are still many issues surrounding the state’s higher education system, including the rising cost of tuition.

“I think what they’re not considering is that while quality is important, that’s why I chose to go to the school I did. I’m not sure if that really matters if I can’t afford to go to the school,” West Chester senior Jamie Berg said.

The Board of Governors Finance Committee voted to increase tuition for universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education by 3.5 percent, meaning $254 more a year. The full board will make a final vote on Thursday.

“The consensus we had gotten — we had talked to a lot of different stakeholders, we talked to students, we talked to the universities, we talked to the legislature, the governor’s office — that was a number that no one was happy with but everyone could accept,” Board of Governors Vice Chair David Maser said.

Board members said the decision was not easy, but no increase was not an option. A review of the state system offered few recommendations for the future, including not closing or merging schools and placing the blame of the issues on the state’s government.

“I was surprised at how black and white they were. They had a pretty strong list of don’t do this, this or this,” Maser said.

The board will not make changes immediately. They plan to use the recommendations to create an action plan in the future.

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