Tag Archives: Tuition

Breaking news: Shelton lowers tuition proposal by $400; Students: ‘Yeah, got a few more thousand of those?’

Strangely enough, Shelton's newest tuition proposal came in the form of this gift (shown above) given to UA students.

By Shain Bergan

Some fresh news, as of just a few hours ago, courtesy of the Campus Correspondent:

Apparently University of Arizona President Robert Shelton has had a last minute change of heart from his original tuition proposal. Less than 24 hours before the next Arizona Board of Regents meeting, where tuition will be set, Shelton sent a memo to student government leaders and deans outlining his new plan, released at the 11th hour:

“Thus, I am amending UA’s tuition and mandatory fee recommendations for FY 2011, as

follows, to implement a scaled and moderated approach to moving UA’s tuition to the median of

our peers.

• Reducing the originally proposed $1,450 increase for resident undergraduate tuition at

UA main campus by $400 to $1,050;

• Reducing the originally proposed $1,450 increase for resident graduate tuition (UA Main

and UA South) by $400 to $1,050;

• Maintaining the $500 increase in resident undergraduate tuition at UA South as originally

proposed;

• Keeping the $2,000 increase in nonresident undergraduate and graduate tuition (UA

main campus and UA South) as originally proposed.”

It might be easy to applaud Shelton at this time, but something’s telling me the president may have had this move planned all along in order to gain favor with a campus that is becoming more and more disenfranchised with its leadership.

Continue reading

ABOR Preview, part 1: Who will stick up for students in the tuition battle?

By Shain Bergan

As the week before Spring Break commences, the three academic issues on everyone’s mind are tuition, fees and tuition. As it so happens, base tuition and mandatory fees for Arizona’s public universities will be decided this week when the Arizona Board of Regents comes to the University of Arizona.

Always looking out for the students, the Board chose in late 2008 to put together a group—known as the Tuition and Affordability Work Group—to “examine tuition policies and affordability issues”. Well, it’s time for that group to put up or shut up. The entire Arizona university system is now—as in, like, right now!—looking to the group for leadership and guidance over whether or not to endorse a plan that would raise tuition about $2,000, which I’m sure will have some weight with the Regents’ decision.

I think we all know what the student preference would be (You know, keeping university enrollment affordable and all that jazz.), so I’m sure such a group would keep their interests in mind, right? After all, here’s a description of the people in the Tuition and Affordability Work Group:

“The work group included senior university staff, student leaders, and Board staff.”

Very well. Let’s go through these, shall we?

Senior university staff – I’m assuming this means university staffers in lofty positions. The only people this could include, though, would be university upper administration types and those who have been elevated by their peers (a.k.a. Faculty Senate Members). Considering the upper administrative and faculty leadership situations look something like this, this and this, I wouldn’t be holding out too much which stance they chose to go with while in the Tuition and Affordability Work Group.

Student leaders – Ah, surely if high-salaried folks in the Admin Building and at Faculty Senate meetings are unwilling to stand up for lower tuition and better higher education affordability (Don’t even throw that weak crap about financial aid picking up the affordability slack, because I will bring this up.), students’ own peers will do so, right?

Read this and this, then cringe.

Strike two.

So what’ll it be, Arizona Board of Regents? I think we all know the answer, but we’ll still be there on Thursday.

Strike three.

The UA’s tuition hearing: A guest report

The world's oldest game has become a favorite among university leaders at the UA.

The following is a guest report written by Will Ferguson at Monday’s tuition hearing at the Harvill Building. Ferguson is currently an intern at the Tucson Weekly and is the former Arizona Daily Wildcat assistant news editor and administration beat writer.

Also, check out The Mad Fee Party’s official statement here, at the Desert Lamp.

By Will Ferguson

To call Monday night’s Arizona Board of Regents tuition hearing a packed house would be a serious understatement.

The small conference room in Harvill—where UA president Robert Shelton, Regent Rick Meyers (sitting in for the absent Regent Dennis DeConcini), student representatives and registered speakers addressed a row of video monitors—quickly filled up past capacity.

Forty-one registered speakers waited their turn to speak.  Many of them had to suffice with a letter to the Regents due to time constraints on the hearing.

Two additional rooms were opened in order to accommodate the multitude of students, faculty and community members who wanted to hear first-hand the reasoning behind a proposed tuition increase—a process that University of Arizona President Shelton said “has been transparent throughout the discussion.

  • Just another chance to blame the legislature for all the UA’s problems

“We had planned for and accepted a $40 million reduction in state funds,” Shelton said. “In reality, the UA has sustained a 100 million dollar cut, a 25 percent reduction—more than double what we had anticipated.

“We cannot further diminish the quality of the UA.”

Continue reading

It’s time, Mr. President: End this “world class” charade

By Shain Bergan

When UA News released this video last week of University of Arizona President Robert Shelton “on the issues”, it was met with little to no fanfare, or even rather no recognition. It’s not hard to see why; there is certainly a lion’s share of routine talking points and the usual stock quotes to which we’ve all become way too accustomed since the initial memo announcing the beginning of the UA Transformation Process hit the presses in September 2008.

You know them—they string together phrases like “world-class institution” and “quality education” as if anyone is really buying that the mass reorganization, consolidation and cutting of UA programs nearly across the board are making us into a better university full of better students who will become better people to create a better world following their UA edification.

The video is almost a perfect summation of the what the UA faculty and students have been damn angry about for almost two years now—the inability of the university leaders to just admit that we’re all screwed.

I get it. Times are tough. It’s difficult to run a university when the state slashes $100 million out from under you. But please, Mr. President and Ms. Provost, call it what it is. It’s not “maintaining a quality education”; it’s trying to make sure that at least some quality is left following cuts and tuition hikes unprecedented in Arizona’s educational history. Students aren’t children anymore; neither are the faculty members. It’s time to fess up and admit what everyone already knows—that the actual “quality” of that piece of paper you get following graduation isn’t what it used to be…and it’s only going to get worse in Arizona.

Continue reading

Tuition vs. net cost, and the question of financial aid

By Shain Bergan

Becky Pallack made an interesting post on her Campus Correspondent blog for the Arizona Daily Star on Tuesday.

Short but sweet, Pallack points out that while everyone is focused on the impending dramatic increase in University of Arizona tuition and fees, they may actually want to take a closer look at net cost of attendance—that is, the cost after the help typically provided by the UA Office of Financial Aid.

The post on the Campus Correspondent references these numbers as the Arizona Board of Regents’ figures for net tuition paid by the average UA student:

“2006-07 $1,297

2007-08 $1,801

2008-09 $1,977”

Here’s the interesting part: Pallack says that the net cost of attendance is rising even faster than the tuition sticker price. UA President Robert Shelton and ABOR’s defense of the rising tuition over the past several months has been that while tuition itself will rise, financial aid will increase even more, actually making UA attendance more affordable for the majority of students, especially those under or around the poverty level.

Continue reading

ABOR, Day 1: The conflict between tuition and financial aid

A rather thin meeting in terms of content, but worthwhile nonetheless.

In the fashion that has become so popular as of late, the Arizona Board of Regents decided the “blame others first, do something later” approach to Arizona’s budget problems is right up their alley.

  • So what do you want? Lower tuition or more financial aid?

About halfway through Thursday’s Regents meeting, ABOR Chief Financial Officer Sandy Woodley and Regent Robert Bulla entered in a fundamental argument exchange with one another. After filleting the State of Arizona for not supplying the universities with enough money to run quality institutions, the Board switched gears (well not really, but kind of), with Regent Fred Boice saying, “I don’t think tuition should be impacted by family income, big or small.” The job of worrying about paying for college, he said, lies with financial aid.

Continue reading

UA Tuition: A disturbing trend put into perspective

With all the recent talk out in cyberspace about tuition hikes—what they mean for the University of Arizona, examining what is supposed to be an “as free-as-possible” education, what the future will bring, sticker shock, etc.—the WatchCat News-Journal wants to get in on the action.

While it is not exactly an epiphany to state that continuous tuition hikes are disturbing and possibly excessive, connecting dots with what tuition hikes have meant historically may go a long way to putting things into perspective, showing just how outrageous some of these numbers have become and how they are connected to other aspects of university policy.

To do our part, we’ve spent quite some time digging around news reports, UA documents and the trusty ol’ UA Fact Books to bring you a good, hard numbers salad to go with your outrageous tuition beefsteak.

Continue reading