Indiana colleges hold line on tuition increase

Deonta Larkins
TheStatehouseFile.com

INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana’s Commission for Higher Education has recommended that the state’s public universities and limit tuition increases to no more than 1.4 percent over next two years.

Under state statute, the commission has the responsibility of recommending non-binding tuition and mandatory fee targets every two years for each of Indiana’s public colleges.

Even though authority for setting tuition rates rests with each college’s board of trustees, the Indiana General Assembly has sought the commission’s expertise in addressing the rising cost of tuition in Indiana.

Indiana Higher Education Commissioner Teresa Lubbers 
Photo by Caitlin Soard, TheStatehouseFile.com

In recent years, state policymakers and Indiana college leaders have worked together to curb tuition increases for Hoosiers. At Indiana’s public four-year colleges, in-state tuition and mandatory fee rates grew by an average of 1.8 percent each year from 2006-07 to 2016-17, about half the national average of 3.5 percent.

Commissioner for Higher Education Teresa Lubbers said, “Our latest tuition recommendations aim to continue this trend to ensure college is affordable for Hoosier students and families.”

Purdue University-West Lafayette and Indiana University-Bloomington have frozen tuition and mandatory fees for several consecutive years, and nine of Indiana’s 16 public colleges met the commission’s 1.65 percent per year recommendation in the last two-year cycle.

“Indiana’s recent tuition increases are the lowest in nearly three decades and among the lowest in the nation,” Lubbers said.

Indiana’s public four-year colleges is sixth nationally for the lowest average one-year increase in tuition and fees over 10 years. In-state tuition and fee rates at Indiana’s public two-year colleges also increased below national averages over the same time period – 2.6 percent compared to 2.8 percent nationally.

The state’s public colleges and universities must set two-year tuition and fee rates no more than 60 days after the end of the legislative session

Deonta Larkins is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a website powered by Franklin College journalist students.

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