The Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education's board of governors on Thursday approved a $178 tuition increase for state universities this fall - the smallest hike in nine years.
Full-time in-state students will pay a base tuition rate of $7,238 a year for the 2016-17 academic year, up from $7,060 last year. Holding the increase to 2.5 percent increase was possible because the state-supported universities have cut nearly $300 million from their expenditures over the last decade, said Kenn Marshall, system spokesman. The commonwealth has also boosted funding to the system by about $31.5 million over the last two years, he said.
Newly elected Board Chair Cynthia D. Shapira said that the system has worked hard to control operating costs in the face of fiscal challenges.
"Many of those challenges remain, but with the benefit of increased funding from the state again this year, the board was able to approve a very modest tuition increase for next year," she said.
The recently passed 2016-17 state budget includes about $444.2 million for the system, up from about $412.8 million in 2014-15. The system received an approximately $20.6 million increase last year and will get an additional $10.8 million this year.
The 14 state system schools are Bloomsburg, California, Cheyney, Clarion, East Stroudsburg, Edinboro, Indiana, Kutztown, Lock Haven, Mansfield, Millersville, Shippensburg, Slippery Rock, and West Chester Universities.