NKU tuition set to rise again

The suspense is almost over for those students who are waiting to find out how much tuition at colleges and universities across Kentucky will increase next year. The Council on Postsecondary Education, which sets tuition and fee limits for Kentucky colleges and universities, is scheduled to meet April 28 to vote on limits for the 2011-2012 academic year.

According to their meeting agenda, the council will approve up to a five percent tuition increase at NKU and a special use fee which will fund the expansion to the Campus Recreation Center.

Once the council sets limits on tuition increases, NKU’s Board of Regents will vote May 4 on how much tuition should increase. After that, the proposed increase will be sent back to the council for final approval in June.

While tuition increases are capped at five percent for residents, there will be an additional increase to include the Rec Center fee.

With the increase in tuition, the overall scholarship budget increased as well, said Kenneth Kline, vice president of finance at Northern Kentucky University.

“The overall scholarship budget went up six percent, and tuition went up five percent,” Kline said.

He said that merit-based aid will have some more money available in it. Need-based aid is receiving only a five-percent increase, keeping it in step with the tuition increase next year.

After tuition increases and the new student fee is factored in, resident students’ tuition will increase by 6.73 percent, from $297 per credit hour to $317, meaning full time students tuition per semester increased from $3,564 to $3,744. With the Rec Center fee, tuition per semester will be $3,804.

Students paying out-of-state tuition will see an 8.64 percent increase, from $6,948 a semester for a full-time student to $7,548, including the Rec Center fee.

According to the council’s guidelines, out-of-state tuition must be at least twice the amount of resident tuition. Kline explained that NKU has had an exception to this rule in the past to help it stay competitive with other local colleges, such as the University of Cincinnati. However, the council is no longer allowing the exception because NKU offers a Metro rate, giving students who live in some counties in Ohio a discounted out-of-state rate.

Students who receive the metro rate will see a six-percent increase, with their per-semester rate increasing from $5,796 to $6,144, including the Rec Center fee. Students from Indiana will see a 6.31 percent increase, with their per-semester rate increasing from $3,996 to $4,248, including the Rec Center fee.

Graduate students see a smaller increase than most other students, with residents getting the highest percent increase at 6.20 percent. Students will pay $428 per credit hour, up from $403 this year. Non-residents will pay $733 per credit hour, up from $694.

Law students will see a less than six-percent increase, with residents taking up to 12 credit hours paying $7,284 per semester, up from $6,948. Non-residents taking up to 12 credit hours will pay $15,480, up from $15,144.

Nursing students will see the largest increase, but Kline explained the increases come from negotiated rates with hospitals. Nursing cohorts in acute care will pay $586 per credit hour, up from $535. The acute care online program rate increased to $636 from $575.

Story by Cassie Stone