May 8, 2012 9:40:43 AM
Students and their parents will be digging a bit deeper in their wallets next semester, following a statewide tuition hike approved Monday by the Institutes of Higher Learning College Board.
Mississippi's eight public universities were asked last month to make preliminary requests based upon projected needs for the next two years.
Tuition will increase nine percent at Mississippi University for Women, raising the current in-state tuition from $4,876 to $5,315 per year or two full-time semesters. Non-resident tuition will increase from $13,287 to $14,483.
Tuition will increase 7.9 percent at Mississippi State University. Tuition is currently $5,805 for residents and $8,865 for non-residents per year or two full-time semesters. Tuition will increase to $6,264 for in-state students and $9,565 for non-residents.
The tuition increases will go into effect July 1, at the beginning of the universities' new fiscal year.
Across the state, the eight schools asked for increases between 5.5 percent and 10 percent for residents and two percent to 10.8 percent for non-residents.
The approved tuition increases averaged 8.5 percent. Of the eight, MUW received the highest increase, second only to Alcorn State University in Lorman, which received an 8.9 percent increase.
But even with the nine percent increase, MUW remains the cheapest of the eight schools. The University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg has the highest tuition, with residents paying $6,336 after the increase.
Tuition rates have risen 65 percent over the past decade, the Associated Press reported Monday, but Mississippi universities are still about 30 percent cheaper than others around the nation.
College Board President Hank Bounds said the increases are necessary due to rising inflation and shrinking state appropriations. Colleges will receive one percent less from the state this year.
But out-of-state students have a bit of good news: Gov. Phil Bryant signed a law last month giving the state's universities permission to waive non-resident tuition for students who live across the state line, but within a 50-mile radius of the college.
MUW President Jim Borsig said the out-of-state tuition waiver may be implemented next spring.
Tuition increases at Miss. public universities
The Associated Press
The contents of this article have been modified since its original posting.
Carmen K. Sisson is the former news editor at The Dispatch.
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