Tuition, fees will increase for 2015-16 academic year

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The Student Fees Allocation Committee has proposed a 7.5 percent increase in student fees for the 2015-16 school year.

The proposed new fee increase was presented in a Truth in Tuition meeting Feb. 17 alongside an additional tuition increase of 3-5 percent. While the tuition hike is within the standards set by the previous years, the 7.5 percent increase in student fees is significantly higher.

The proposed fees are awaiting approval by the board of trustees.

Some of the established fees are getting their names changed, and one is being deleted.

  • The New Student Center Fund is becoming the Human Performance Center Fund.
  • The Unexpected Plant is becoming the Campus Facilities Maintenance
  • The IT Support (old Banner Fee) is being removed, and its fees will be absorbed by the Human Performance Center Fund.

“The Banner Fee was going to other things that it should not have been going to,” Dean of Students Del Beatty said. “The students were paying for things [they] should not have been paying for.”

The student fee increases would total $25 if approved. 

  • Athletics increased from $65 to $80 
  • Instructional Computers increased from $22 to $24
  • Student Center Operations increased from $20 to $22.50
  • Tutoring Center increased from $4 to $4.50 
  • New Student Center Fund is a new fee that will be $5 

The largest proposed increase is in athletics. Student Body President Gregory J. Layton, a senior English major from Cottonwood Heights, said Dixie State University’s sports teams are having to dip into donations meant for scholarships to pay for operating expenses. The proposed $15 rise will help the athletic department pay its $450,000 base operating expenses without dipping into other funds.

“[Sports] are really important, especially as our ambassadors recruit new students,” said Jill Wulfenstein, a senior integrated studies major from Pahrump, Nevada, and DSUSA student life vice president. “If your athletics teams are successful, there is a direct correlation between that and how people perceive your university.”  

Layton said the decision to increase the fees is based on what would benefit students, and one thing that will benefit students the most is scholarships.

“[None] of our athletic teams provide the maximum amount of scholarships that the NCAA allows — none of them,” Layton said. “And, seven out of the 13 don’t even provide half.”

The cost of tuition is expected to increase from $1,897 to as high as $1,992 for residents and from $6,065 to as high as $6,368 for non-residents. Beatty said the tuition increase rate is typically mandated by state legislature.      

“We have been in a slump economically,” Beatty said. “When the tax dollars decrease … people aren’t buying cars, they’re not buying homes and they’re not investing. The state doesn’t have tax revenue to put toward higher education. So, there is no other choice but to have the minimal difference made up by student tuition dollars.”