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OSU Trustees to vote on latest tuition hike

OSU's proposed tuition increase would mean an additional $477 per year for in-state undergraduate students. At the May trustees meeting, Budget Director William Shkurti said the six percent increase is necessary to compensate for a decrease in state funding.

"Our state support is growing less than two percent this year, so most of the difference we make up through tuition, although we also try to reduce expenses wherever we can, do private fundraisers wherever we can, and then the tuition increase fills in the difference."

Shkurti says the increase also helps attract top-notch faculty and will fund building and technology projects. But students remain split on the tuition hikes. Fifth-year business student Chris Ward says he sees few improvements that merit such large tuition increases.

"Maybe I'm just in older buildings. but I haven't seen a lot of that technology increase come into my favor," Ward says. "A lot of the stuff I do is at home. I don't use a lot of the facilities. Maybe I'm not using the correct ones, but I don't see (improvements) reflect in my tuition year to year."

But second-year student Marland Turner disagrees with Ward. Turner characterizes tuition increases as a necessary evil.

"Inflation is going up every year, and I know other universities are increasing (tuition) as well, so I don't see it a big problem," Turner says. " I thing it probably has to happen."

Turner is right that other universities have raised tuition in recent years. But OSU has raised its tuition more than any other public university in Ohio during the last 11 years.

Since 1995 the cost of tuition for an incoming freshman at OSU has increased more than $4,800, more than any other public school in Ohio. During the same time span the Consumer Price Index rose about 32 percent, tuition for an incoming freshman at OSU rose 147 percent. The 12 other public universities in Ohio averaged increases of about 108 percent during the same time period.

Recently-passed legislation caps annual tuition increase at six percent or $500, whichever is less. OSU is among six Ohio schools planning to raise tuition the most allowed under state law. The Board of Trustees is scheduled to vote on the proposal Friday.