Letter to the Editor: Increasing Tuition Not a Big Deal

By and


I have to admit that lately I have not been too concerned with the tuition hike that will ensue over the next several years. However, my sentiment changed with the protest announced at the Capitol today.

I’m a little curious about where the rest of the funds would come from if the protest was successful–increased income taxes? Property taxes? I don’t know. But the tax benefit of paying tuition to the university instead of the State Tax Commission is a pretty convincing argument already. I’d rather take tax credits in relation to my tuition payments than pay a premium in my income or property taxes, but who wouldn’t? The benefits of a tuition increase don’t stop there.

If the university’s tuition rates stay stagnant in the face of inflation, instructor remuneration will effectively decrease, along with funds for secondary programs and computer labs, etc. On first instance, maybe this doesn’t sound so bad. But if you carry the logic further, stagnant tuition rates create a lose-lose-lose for students, educators and employers.

With no increase, the quality of education at the U softens. Degrees obtained from the U would carry less clout than before. (Remember, you always get what you pay for). But if the quality increases, so does the status of the U. Couple that with an enrollment freeze that U President Bernie Machen has proposed, and our university will be sitting closer to a privately funded institution.

What’s more is that more four-year institutions are popping up in the state. If the U wants to maintain or enhance its current status, it must differentiate itself by creating a higher level of education. All of these positive changes at the U will translate into increased value for graduates.

The heavier investment of higher tuition easily lends itself to a greater return.

Matt Bettilyon

Senior, Accounting