The UC Board of Regents approved a 2.5 percent tuition hike to go into effect starting fall of 2017 in a meeting earlier today. Other hikes include an increased student services fee for all students and a 5 percent supplemental tuition fee for out-of-state students.
In exact figures, students will pay an extra $282 towards tuition, which will increase to $11,502 starting next school year. The student services fee increase will require an additional $54 from students, rising to $1,128. As for out-of-state undergraduates, they will pay $1,332 on top of these other hikes. However, financial aid is likely to cover these additional costs for qualifying students, roughly 176,000 undergraduates.
The vote took place following UC President Janet Napolitano’s remarks yesterday, urging the regents to approve tuition hikes at the two-day meeting. Citing budgetary strains since the 2008 recession, campuses are facing growing student populations and struggling to accommodate them. According to UC officials, these increases will raise $88 million, with one-third going to financial aid and the rest to other needs, like hiring more faculty and supporting mental health services.
Six members of the University of California Student Association (UCSA), a coalition of UC students and student governments, attended the meeting and urged members to vote against the proposal. Ralph Washington, UCSA President, believes that these hikes are significant amounts for students, especially when they’re not directly involved in making these decisions.
“We hear arguments that increasing fees for students is considered justifiable, but students often don’t have a say on these actions,” Washington said in a phone interview. “There’s a student regent on the board, which is significant, but students are still disenfranchised. We often don’t get to make the decisions, but we have to deal with the consequences of decisions others have made for us.”
UCSD students held a protest against the tuition hike this afternoon, in addition to advocating for Prop. 13 reform, sanctuary campuses, and fossil fuel/prison divestment.
Shine Cho is the News Editor at The Triton. Staff writer Sylvia O contributed to the article, which will be updated as the story develops.