Tuition hike to be discussed

Students will be given an opportunity at the start of next semester to voice their concerns over a proposed tuition increase, which the Board of Regents is expected to pass in January.

The Student Government Association tuition committee will hold an information forum Tuesday, Jan. 14, at 4 p.m. in the Otto M. Budig Theater.

All students are urged to attend to learn more about the increase, as well as the budget shortfall administrators say necessitated the hike, which is expected to be $300-$400 per year, effective for the 2004-2005 school year.

Input will be sought from students on ideas for budget cuts and how a tuition increase could personally affect them.

“We really want as many students to show up as possible, because nothing could send a stronger message to the (university) administration than a lot of students being there,” said Joe Mayer, SGA senator.

The SGA executive cabinet and tuition committee will meet Dec. 11 to discuss the university budget, which is underfunded by $26 million, according to state estimates.

SGA hopes to gather information from students and administrators about how the funds generated through the increase could be used to benefit students, said Eric Fegan, SGA executive vice president and tuition committee chair.

“We can’t prevent a tuition increase,” Fegan said. “That’s not what we’re here to do. We just want to make sure all revenue sources are explored.”

Fegan will present the tuition committee’s recommendations Jan. 16 to SGA at its retreat at Blue Lick Battlefield State Park in Carlisle, Ky. During the weekend-long retreat, SGA will discuss and make its final vote on its tuition recommendations.

NKU receives less state money per full-time student than any other Kentucky university and the yearly tuition of $3,744 is third-highest among state universities in the Commonwealth.

President James Votruba told SGA at its Nov. 10 meeting that the proposed hike, which would raise tuition between 8 percent and 11 percent, was necessitated by increased enrollment.

However, Fegan is skeptical, noting that enrollment grew by only 1.4 percent this year.