At its meeting on Friday, May 10, the Ferris State University Board of Trustees voted to set tuition rates for the 2013-14 academic year, implementing a 2.24-percent increase for undergraduate tuition.
“In setting tuition rates this early in the year, the Board wanted to help students to best plan for the upcoming year,” said Ferris President David Eisler. “We have been very mindful of the cost of a college education, and this modest increase helps us meet our dual goals of containing costs and maintaining the quality of our academic offerings.”
Board of Trustees Chair Gary Granger echoed Eisler’s emphasis on keeping a Ferris degree affordable.
“We as a board are very pleased with efforts of the administration to be cost-conscious and offer an educational experience that is very competitive,” Granger said. “They’ve done a good job of working with their leadership team to evaluate expenses in every area so we can offer a fair and competitive rate at a very attractive price point for students and their families.”
In keeping with a structure currently in use at seven other Michigan universities, the trustees also voted to implement an upper-division tuition rate which will go into effect for the Spring 2014 semester. The rate will create a $5 differential between lower and upper-division rates, which reflects the increased costs of delivering instruction for third-and fourth-year students, vs. first-and second-year undergraduates. Ferris’ 300-400 level courses cost almost 30 percent more to deliver than the university’s 100-200 level courses.
In April, Central Michigan University raised tuition rates 2.57 percent, and last week Michigan Tech raised undergraduate tuition 2.9 percent. For the fall semester, full-time undergraduates at Ferris will pay $365 per credit hour, an increase of just $8 per-credit-hour, or $120 per 15-credit-hour semester – for a total of $5,475 per semester. This brings the university’s undergraduate rate per 30-semester year to $10,950, up from $10,710. Last year, Ferris State University’s tuition increase of 2.59 percent was the second-lowest in the state.
Although appropriations for higher education have not yet been completed, the university is positioned to do well under the state’s formula for performance-based funding. Last year Ferris’ emphasis on career-oriented degrees, increased graduation rates and constrained administrative costs made it one of the top recipients of performance-based aid. The alignment of the university’s priorities with the need to create a workforce educated for 21st century challenges means Ferris again this year stands to be rewarded for meeting the state’s performance metrics.