FRANKFORT – Kentucky’s Council on Postsecondary Education set 2016-17 tuition and mandatory fee ceilings for resident undergraduate students at its meeting on Tuesday.
The approved tuition ceilings will help campuses partially offset new state funding cuts, mandated pension increases, and fixed and unavoidable cost increases such as health insurance and maintenance and operations. Even with the additional tuition revenue, campuses will face a $64.8 million shortfall for the 2016-17 year.
“While it is always difficult to ask our students and families to pay more for college, these new ceilings attempt to balance our students’ ability to pay for college and the significant budget challenges facing our campuses,” said CPE President Bob King.
The ceilings were set at 5 percent for the state’s two research institutions, the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville.
For the six comprehensive universities, the Council approved a “common dollar increase” ceiling of $432 annually. The comprehensive campuses include Eastern Kentucky University, Kentucky State University, Morehead State University, Murray State University, Northern Kentucky University and Western Kentucky University. The Council endorsed Murray State University’s new tuition and scholarship model.
The Council also approved a $9 per credit hour ceiling for the Kentucky Community and Technical College System.
In other tuition action, the Council adopted a nonresident student tuition and fee policy that requires campuses to generate a sufficient amount of net tuition and fee revenue per nonresident student to equal or exceed 100 percent of direct instructional and students services costs per student.
Finally, the Council approved a proposal that allows campuses to submit for Council approval market competitive resident and nonresident tuition rates for graduate, professional and online courses.
The next step in the process calls for campuses to submit their tuition and fee proposals to the Council for action at its June 3 meeting.
To help with college affordability, the Prichard Committee’s Student Voice Team, in conjunction with the Kentucky College and Career Connection, presented an overview of their research-based program and advocacy activities, which include a recently launched KnowHow2Pay campaign that aims to increase awareness of the different ways that Kentucky students and families can make a college degree more affordable.
In other action, the Council:
‒ Approved the University of Kentucky’s request for a $1.7 million project to renovate the Lucille Little Library, funded with private sources.
‒ Approved three academic programs: Master of Science in Applied Statistics at the University of Kentucky; Master of Science in Athletic Training for Murray State University; and a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Emergency Management and Homeland Security for Northern Kentucky University.
‒ Appointed MaryAnne Elliott to the Committee on Equal Opportunities to replace W. Bruce Ayers, whose term was not confirmed.
‒ Appointed Donna Moore as vice chair to replace Joe Graviss, whose term was not confirmed.
‒ Appointed Sherrill Zimmerman to the Council’s Executive Committee to replace Joe Graviss.
‒ Adopted resolutions in recognition of outstanding service for outgoing Council members Joe Graviss, W. Bruce Ayers, Mark Guilfoyle and Brenda McGown.
The Council heard the following reports: CPE President, Kentucky Commissioner of Education, 2016 Legislative Session Summary, Committee on Equal Opportunities, Statewide Diversity Policy and Kentucky College Indicators. Reports from the campuses were also available.