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|For Immediate Release
January 17, 2001
UNC Asheville's Board of Trustees Unanimously Recommends Tuition Increase; Proposal Moves to UNC Board of Governors
The UNC Asheville Board of Trustees today voted unanimously to recommend a three-year tuition increase of $200 per year for review by the University of North Carolina Board of Governors. All funds from the tuition increase would go to enhance the student academic experience, both inside and outside the classroom.
The recommendation includes a commitment of funds to cover the full cost of the tuition increase for students who receive need-based financial aid and to expand on-campus work opportunities for students.
Forty percent of the increased revenue would go to classroom and instructional support. For example, funds would go to several critically important educational programs, including the Teaching Fellows, the African American Colloquium, the Honors Program and Undergraduate Research. Funds would also be used to purchase scientific equipment, computer software, and other much needed academic equipment.
Twenty-five percent of the new funds would be dedicated to student support services, providing increased assistance for students with disabilities, additional career counseling services, expanded multicultural programming, and additional financial aid counseling, as well as the increased funding of on-campus student work opportunities.
Thirty-five percent of the funds would be set in a "hold harmless" financial aid pool dedicated to insuring that the tuition increase is covered for all students receiving need-based financial aid.
The new funds will be spent on priorities that have been identified in recent years through UNCA's campuswide strategic planning process.
Ryan Southern, Student Government Association president, and Kevin Brinson, Student Government Association vice president and a member of the Tuition and Fees Committee, both told the board that UNCA's student body supports the increase. "The Tuition and Fees Committee investigated intensely what the university needed and what the increase should go for. . . . We felt strongly that we needed to put the increase into something that benefits all students -- academics and students life," Brinson said. "Our academics are top notch, but it is clear additional funding is needed. Improving student services is a high priority for any student and for the university as a whole. The Student Government Association unanimously supports this proposal."
"The Chancellor has spoken to many of the students about this proposal and where the money would go -- directly to students and academic programs. I feel I can speak for the entire student body to say we support this," Southern said.
"We have an excellent institution, but we have to have resources available to sustain it, " said UNCA Chancellor James Mullen. "The board has sent forward this proposal for three basic reasons. First, because it believes that a tuition adjustment will permit a range of learning opportunities that our students deserve and we see as fundamental if we are to stand among America's finest liberal arts colleges. Second, the Board sees the plan as part of a comprehensive funding strategy that also emphasizes the need for additional state funding and builds on the increasing success of UNCA's private fund-raising efforts. Third, the Board recognized the central importance of the plan's strong financial aid component -- a component which holds harmless those students who depend on aid."
"The tuition initiative holds outstanding potential to enhance academic and student life at UNC Asheville," said Kevan Frazier, a UNCA alumnus and faculty member. "The proposal is tied to a well-planned implementation program. As such, it will be an effective way to support our academic mission as we continue to offer one of the best liberal arts educations in the nation."
Tuition at all UNC campuses is set by the UNC Board of Governors. Campuses may request special increases from the UNC Board of Governors. This is the first time UNCA has pursued such an adjustment. Last year UNC-Chapel Hill, North Carolina State, UNC-Wilmington, East Carolina University and UNC-Charlotte were granted increases. The Board of Governors will consider campus-initiated tuition increases at its March meeting.
UNCA's tuition adjustment proposal originated from a unanimous recommendation of the campus Fees and Tuition committee, whose membership included the Student Government Association vice president, several members of faculty and administration, and a representative of the Board of Trustees.
The proposal recommends a $200 increase in annual tuition for 2001-2002, an additional $200 for 2002-2003, and a third $200 increment for 2003-2004. Current tuition and fees at UNCA for an instate student total $2,063.
UNCA estimates that about $552,000 would be generated by the tuition increase in 2002-2002, $1.10 million in 2002-2003, and $1.7 million in 2003-2004. Every year, 35 percent of the revenue would be set aside to cover the cost of the tuition increase for students who receive need-based financial aid. In addition, funding would be set aside to expand on-campus work opportunities, which often prove more academically beneficial to working students than do off-campus, part-time jobs.
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