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June 29, 2017 - State Regents Continue to Keep Tuition Affordable RSS feed

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The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education today approved moderate increases to tuition and mandatory fees for Oklahoma’s public colleges and universities. Tuition and mandatory fees for in-state undergraduate students will increase an average of 5.3 percent statewide for the 2017-18 academic year.

“The continued reduction in state support for public higher education compromises our ability to produce the additional degrees required to meet Oklahoma’s workforce needs,” said John Massey, chair of the State Regents. “While we recognize the extremely challenging budget environment, there is no question the cuts to higher education will negatively impact the ability of our colleges and universities to meet their academic missions.”

On average, a full-time Oklahoma college student will pay $284 more for tuition and mandatory fees in 2017-18.

“The State Regents and our colleges and universities continue to work tirelessly to keep higher education affordable for all Oklahomans,” said Chancellor Glen D. Johnson. “In light of successive years of budget cuts to higher education, moderate tuition and fee increases are necessary to enable public colleges and universities to meet mandatory costs as they remain committed to preparing Oklahoma graduates to compete in today’s competitive global economy.”

The state’s research universities, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater and Tulsa, and the University of Oklahoma, Norman, increased their in-state tuition and mandatory fee rates by 5.0 percent.

Public regional university tuition and mandatory fee increases average 4.1 percent for in-state undergraduates.

Oklahoma’s community colleges will increase in-state tuition and mandatory fee rates by an average of 7.1 percent.

State law requires tuition to remain at levels below the average among comparable institutions, and Oklahoma’s public colleges and universities continue to keep tuition well within those limits.

“As university and college presidents, we take our tuition recommendation responsibility very seriously,” said Southwestern Oklahoma State University President Randy Beutler, who serves as chair of the Council of Presidents. “Our students, faculty, staff and the future of Oklahoma are always foremost in our minds in reaching these difficult decisions. With higher education in our state sustaining cuts for three years in a row, it has been difficult for institutions to carry out their primary missions as the founders of Oklahoma envisioned. These modest tuition increases will not come close to replacing the decline of state appropriations to our public institutions, but this action will help mitigate those losses until the state budget improves.”

The law also requires the State Regents to make a reasonable effort to increase financial aid across the state system proportionate to any increase in tuition. Tuition waivers and scholarships provided by state institutions will increase 8.1 percent from FY 2017.

In addition, the State Regents administer Oklahoma’s Promise, a state scholarship program that allows high school students from middle- and low-income families to earn a college tuition scholarship. Beginning in 2017-18, the Oklahoma Legislature expanded eligibility for the program by increasing the family income limit from $50,000 to $55,000. An estimated 18,000 students will receive the Oklahoma’s Promise scholarship in 2017-18.