WVU considering 10 percent increase in in-state tuition

Today, West Virginia University administrators will propose to the school’s Board of Governors a nearly 10 percent increase in tuition and fees for in-state students on its Morgantown campus and a nearly 5 percent increase for out-of-state students, according to information provided to the Gazette on Thursday.

If approved, the annual cost for WVU in-state undergraduates would increase about $670, to $7,630, in the 2015-16 academic year. According to data from the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, WVU’s in-state tuition for the current academic year was the highest among state public institutions, and has increased $1,550, or 29 percent, in the past five years.

The annual cost for WVU out-of-state undergraduates would increase $1,010, to $21,430. That cost — also currently the highest among state public colleges and universities — has increased $3,420, or 20 percent, over the past five academic years.

WVU had more than 22,500 undergraduate students last fall.

The board is also expected to vote today on similar increases for graduate students. The actual proposed increases are 9.66 percent for in-state undergraduates, 9.93 percent for in-state graduate students, 4.94 percent for out-of-state undergraduates and 4.95 percent for out-of-state graduate students.

The state HEPC board, which has its next meeting scheduled for May 29, would have to give final approval to the resident tuition increases because they exceed 5 percent.

WVU officials declined to confirm the amount of the proposed increase Thursday, though spokesman John Bolt said the board will discuss both resident and non-resident tuition hikes.

When asked whether a proposal exists for the higher costs, Bolt said there’s “not a public proposal.”

“We can’t confirm any numbers until the board actually will deal with it in public session tomorrow,” he said. The meeting is scheduled to start 8:30 a.m. in the Barnette Board of Governors Room in the Erickson Alumni Center, at 1 Alumni Drive in Morgantown.

Tuition increases at West Virginia University Tech in Montgomery will also be considered by the WVU board today, WVU spokeswoman April Kaull said.

Last week, West Virginia State University’s Board of Governors approved tuition and fee increases equaling a roughly 7 percent jump for in-state undergraduates. Administrators at Marshall University — the state’s second-largest institution behind WVU — said Wednesday they want to craft a 2015-16 budget that won’t require a general tuition increase, though they don’t yet know how a newly approved fee restructuring will affect overall student costs.

Reach Ryan Quinn at ryan.quinn@wvgazette.com, 304-348-1254 or follow @RyanEQuinn on Twitter.

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