Tuition to increase 3.5 percent

SKS staff

Kent State’s tuition will increase by 3.5 percent effective Fall 2011.

University officials released a statement June 30 announcing the change. The announcement comes after the Ohio General Assembly passed the state budget June 29.

The new budget, which Gov. John Kasich signed Thursday, provides Kent State’s main campus with $12.4 million less funding than last year’s budget. Funding for the seven other regional campuses will decrease by $3.5 million. A 3.5 percent tuition hike is the maximum increase allowed by the state and Gov. Kasich.

In March and again in April, President Lester Lefton and Provost Robert Frank stated they weren’t keen on raising tuition, but that an increase would depend on how much the state planned to cut funding for higher education.

Undergraduate tuition for students at the Kent campus will increase $158 per semester, while graduate tuition will increase $168 per semester.

Some students like Karina Drosenos, senior German translation major, said they were surprised to learn about the tuition hike, and not in a pleasant way.

The hike doesn’t affect Drosenos’ financial situation personally, but she said she fears this latest tuition will bury underclassmen with more financial worries.

“I remember when I started studying here I didn’t get financial aid, and I had to pay out of my pocket,” Drosenos said. “I only studied, like, one class per semester because it was way too expensive.”

Rex Hughes, a graduate student studying library and information science, said he will avoid the tuition hike because he works as a graduate assistant, but he said he is concerned for freshmen just entering college.

“If it keeps going on, freshmen just starting out will see more increases throughout the years,” Hughes said.

Craig Turskey, senior accounting major, said the tuition hike is bad for students, but that it was a necessary decision the university made due to a troubled economy.

“Everyone is struggling,” Turskey said. “The school is struggling, too.”