Regents to consider tuition increase for public universities

By: - May 10, 2023 4:31 pm

This would be the second year in a row that tuition has risen at state universities if the Board of Regents approves the proposal. (Photo illustration via Canva)

Iowa public college students could see a cost increase to their education again. The Iowa Board of Regents will discuss undergraduate tuition increases Thursday of up to 3.5% for resident students and up to 4% for nonresident students. 

The discussion of tuition increases comes after the fiscal year 2024 budget was passed by the Legislature and did not increase general appropriation funding from the year prior.

The board requested an increase of $32 million for general appropriations for fiscal year 2024. Despite the ask, the Legislature did not increase general appropriations this session.

The Legislature did appropriate special purpose funding to the University of Iowa College of Nursing, STEM workforce initiatives at Iowa State University, and teacher student recruitment at Northern Iowa University, totaling $7.1 million.

The board said the increase will address “inflationary cost increases, recruiting and retaining faculty and staff in national markets, meeting collective bargaining terms, deferred maintenance needs in academic facilities and student financial aid.”

(Source: Iowa Board of Regents)

The resident tuition increase of 3.5% would increase University of Iowa tuition by $305, Iowa State University tuition by $305 and University of Northern Iowa tuition by $285. 

Students saw an increase of 4.25% in fiscal year 2023: $355 for University of Iowa, $354 for Iowa State University and $331 for University of Northern Iowa. 

Mandatory fees are also seeing proposed increases. 

Iowa State University students would see a 4.1% increase in fees, with the student activity fee and building fee making the biggest increases by percentage. The University of Northern Iowa fees would increase 2.5%, with technology, student activity and student service fees increasing the most percentage points. 

University of Iowa students would see a 18.6% increase in fees, with a new fee of $240, which was introduced to the board of regents as part of a 10-year capital plan to renovate the Iowa Memorial Union. 

Tuition is also proposed to increase up to 4% for resident graduate students at Iowa State and up to 3.5% at University of Iowa and Northern Iowa University. University of Iowa nonresident tuition would increase 1.28%. 

The board will also discuss tuition increases to specific higher cost undergraduate and graduate programs at Iowa State University and University of Iowa. Students in various programs would see even higher increases in tuition, such as sophomores in Iowa State’s Ivy College of Business or law students at the University of Iowa. 

The meeting will be held May 11 at the Board of Regents office in Urbandale and will be livestreamed on the Board of Regents website.

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Jay Waagmeester
Jay Waagmeester

Jay is a former Iowa Capital Dispatch intern. Jay is based in Ames and is currently a senior majoring in journalism and marketing at Iowa State University. He has interned at New Century Press and contributed to the Iowa State Daily.