(Ashland, Ore.) — The Southern Oregon University Board of Trustees agreed today with a recommendation from the university’s Tuition Advisory Council and President Linda Schott for tuition rates in the 2021-22 academic year to increase by the lowest margin in recent memory. Tuition for resident undergraduate students will increase by just $5 per credit hour.
Undergraduates from Oregon will pay $201 per credit hour, up from $196 this year – an increase of 2.55 percent. Residents of 16 Western states and territories that are part of the Western University Exchange will pay $301.50, up from $294; and other non-resident undergraduates will pay $597, up from $580. Tuition rates for graduate students from Oregon will increase to $505 per credit hour, up from $491; non-resident graduate students will pay $610, up from $593.
“Determining the cost of tuition and fees is a key responsibility that every SOU trustee takes very seriously,” said Paul Nicholson, chair of the SOU Board of Trustees. “Thanks to the great, collaborative work of our Tuition Advisory Council, the board readily approved a recommendation from the council and the president that seeks to balance the cost of a high-quality education with access and affordability for our valued students.”
The rates approved unanimously by the Board of Trustees are based on a recommendation from SOU’s Tuition Advisory Council, which met numerous times and is made up of students, faculty and administrators. President Schott agreed with the council’s recommendations and forwarded them to the trustees for approval.
SOU remains committed to keeping higher education within the reach of all students and prospective students, and will offset the tuition increase with additional institutional aid for those who are least able to afford the additional cost. The university has also addressed student expenses for textbooks, and the room-and-board costs of those who live in residence halls.
“We are absolutely committed to making an education at SOU as affordable as possible, while preparing our graduates for the regional job market and giving them tools to achieve fulfilling lives of purpose,” President Schott said. “These tuition rates will keep our university among the most affordable in Oregon.”
State legislators are not expected to make final decisions on the state budget until early July, but universities must prepare their budgets during the spring. SOU will continue to make its case for additional state funding, but must use current information to plan for the coming academic year.
The state paid for two-thirds of its universities’ operating budgets 30 years ago and tuition covered the remaining third. The ratio is now exactly opposite.