20, No. 13, Feb. 1, 2001
Tuition increases approved
by UI Board of Trustees
Cornish , UIC News Bureau Staff Writer
At its Jan. 18 meeting in Chicago, the UI Board of Trustees approved
a comprehensive tuition plan that will raise tuition significantly for
new students to finance improved student services and programs, enhanced
educational technology and expanded enrollment in key high-demand courses
The trustees originally were scheduled to vote on the increase at the
March board meeting, but after hearing the administrations proposal
about the tuition program and the benefits it would bring to the campuses,
the board felt there was no reason to wait.
"Everyone understands the necessity in doing this. Why are we delaying
the vote until March?" trustee Kenneth Schmidt asked.
Since the new plan was unveiled in December, forums have been held at
the Chicago and Urbana campuses, the campuses where students will be
affected by the tuition changes.
Campus administrators met with student leaders to explain why the increase
Students entering the Chicago and Urbana-Champaign campuses for the
first time in fall 2001 will pay an additional $500 in tuition for that
In fall 2002, a second increase of $500 would be added, bringing the
total increase to $1,000 by the end of that academic year.
Students already enrolled at Urbana will pay a 5 percent increase in
The increase for new students is needed to improve services to students.
Some of the improvements include adding more classes, improving the
libraries, hiring more faculty members and repairing or remodeling buildings.
At Urbana, the funds are earmarked to build a "world-class faculty"
and for undergraduate curriculum enhancements, Provost Richard Herman
"In order to deliver programs, we need a world class faculty,"
he said. "We need to offer students access through research at
the undergraduate level."
Herman said although the state has been generous in funding, it cannot
give the university what it needs to retain and attract faculty members.
"The state cannot do it all," he said. "It is very clear
we are down faculty since 1998."
"This will go a long way to help us be competitive," UI President
James J. Stukel said. "Quality matters."
Stukel said the increase is necessary to keep the university competitive
with its counterparts.
"The issues we have to deal with are the number of courses available
to undergraduate students and the faculty members," he said. "We
are at a competitive disadvantage because of faculty losses."
Administrators say even with the increase, the UI is still a financial
"Weve been quite diligent over the past decade at holding
the line on tuition," said Chester Gardner, acting vice president
for academic affairs.
"This increase is enormously important to this university. Our
goal is service to our students. We want them to have a marvelous educational
Gardner credited the faculty for raising an increasing amount of funds
for research through gifts, grants and contracts in the past decade.
"Our faculty are working very hard to help raise resources,"
New students will pay most of the increase because they will be the
ones to see the benefits of the increase, Gardner said.
"The benefits that will accrue from this increase will be felt
two or three years from now," he said. "We felt it was most
fair students who will receive the benefits should pay."
Trustee Susan Gravenhorst said she believes it is time for an increase
"I think weve been very fair in the past 10 years,"
she said. "I think it is a very reasonable increase."
Measures will be taken to make sure students who cannot afford the increase
can still attend the UI, said board chairman Gerald Shea.
"We have ensured we wont turn away any student," he
Student trustees Neil Calderon from the Springfield campus and Erin
Glezen from the Urbana-Champaign campus cast their advisory votes against
the tuition increase.
Chicago student trustee Arun Reddy voted for the increase, but urged
the administrators on each campus to consult students about where the
funds should be used.
"As president, I will make the commitment that the provosts on
each campus will have a continuing dialogue with students," Stukel
"This is a very ambitious increase, a very ambitious plan,"
Tuition increases earmarked for
- Hiring more faculty members
- Undergraduate curriculum enhancements.
- Academic advising and career placement
- Educational technology programs and infrastructure
- Improvements to libraries
- Laboratory and classroom modernization
- Graduate fellowships
- Student financial aid