Temple tuition rises after a freeze

Posted: June 22, 2013

Temple University's board of trustees voted Thursday to raise tuition and fees 3.6 percent, or $500, a departure from last year, when rates were frozen.

"For this year, doing zero just wasn't possible," said Ken Kaiser, senior associate vice president for finance and human resources.

In-state students will pay $14,096 in tuition and fees, up from $13,596 last year. The increase includes a $400, or 2.8 percent, tuition increase, and a $100, or 17 percent, increase in the mandatory student activity fee, which will rise to $690. Out-of-state students' tuition will rise $600.

The increase in the activity fee was driven by a greater demand for counseling, advising, and career services, officials said.

A year ago, Temple froze tuition for the first time since 1995. The university accomplished that by cutting $35 million from its budget at a time when state funding remained flat, Kaiser said. The state has proposed flat funding for Temple and other state-related universities this year as well.

Kaiser said the cost for some rooms would rise. On average, room rates will increase 3.1 percent and meal costs 2.6 percent. Students will pay about $9,440 in room and board for a standard plan.

That means the total annual cost for an in-state student will be about $23,500.

Temple will increase its financial aid budget by $8.1 million, to $93 million, to help offset the increase, officials said.

Elsewhere in the area, tuition increases vary.

Rowan University, a state school in Glassboro, froze tuition and fees and increased room and board 2 percent. In-state students will pay $23,300 in tuition, fees and room and board.

Rowan president Ali Houshmand attributed the freeze in part to a "cost-center" budgeting system "that made departments and programs accountable for every dollar spent" and to an increase in enrollment that brought in more revenue.

Cabrini College, a private school in Radnor, also froze tuition after cutting it 12.5 percent last year. Students again will pay $29,000 in tuition. Most room costs will stay the same, a spokeswoman said. Standard room and board is about $11,660.

The University of Pennsylvania increased overall costs 3.9 percent, to $58,812.

Several other private schools imposed similar rises. Overall costs at Haverford College increased 3.9 percent, to $59,236; at Bryn Mawr College, 3.9 percent, to $57,760. Villanova University is up 4 percent to $56,286 and Swarthmore College 3.8 percent, to $57,870.

Drexel University raised overall costs 3.9 percent, with the majority of its students in the five-year co-op program to pay between $49,010 and $53,360.

Other schools implemented slightly smaller increases. Costs at Arcadia University rose 3.3 percent, to $49,370. St. Joseph's University imposed a 3.1 percent increase, to $52,272.

Many of the increases surpassed the core rate of inflation, 1.7 percent in the last 12 months.

Several state colleges and universities in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, including Rutgers, Pennsylvania State University, and the 14 universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education have not yet set tuition and, in some cases, room and board. Their trustees are to vote in July.

Penn State previously approved a 4.2 percent increase in 2013-14 room and board to $9,370.

Contact Susan Snyder

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Read her blog at http://www.inquirer.com/philly/


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