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University Of California Regents Approve 9.6% Tuition Hike

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS / AP) – The University of California, one of the country’s largest and most respected higher education systems, raised tuition Thursday by another 9.6 percent for the upcoming school year in response to a sharp reduction in government support.

The $1,068 hike passed by the Board of Regents came on top of a previously approved 8 percent hike for 2011-2012.

Incoming UCLA junior Alex Jreisat, who is transferring from a community college, said the latest increase will force him and other students to borrow more money and go deeper into debt.

“It’s already putting me in an uncomfortable situation financially,” said Jreisat, a 21-year-old anthropology major who traveled to San Francisco to speak at the board meeting. “It’s tragic that the regents keep balancing the budget on the backs of students … It’s a shame that the state has to put the regents in that position.”

KCBS’ Doug Sovern Reports:

Undergraduate and graduate tuition for California residents will jump to $12,192 a year, which doesn’t include room, board and roughly $1,000 in campus fees. That’s $1,890, or 18 percent, more than the amount UC students paid in the previous academic year and more than three times what they paid a decade ago.

About one-third of the estimated $216 million in new tuition revenue will be used for financial aid. Out-of-state and international students will pay about $36,000 in annual tuition.

California’s system of public higher education has long served as a model of access, affordability and academic excellence, but it’s come under severe financial pressure over the past few years as the state slashed funding to close massive budget deficits caused by the economic downturn.

As a result, students at UC, the 23-campus California State University system and 112 community colleges have seen their tuition bills soar even while campuses reduced course sections, shrank teaching staffs, eliminated academic programs and reduced services.

The UC system’s vote to raise tuition Thursday came just two days after the CSU system decided to raise tuition by 12 percent, on top of a previously approved 10 percent increase, to offset state budget cuts. That system has about 412,000 students.

Annual tuition for in-state CSU undergraduates will increase this fall to $5,472, not including room, board or campus fees averaging $950. That’s nearly four times what students paid 10 years ago.

University of California regents said the tuition increase in the UC system was necessary to preserve academic quality and student access at its 10 campuses.

“I hate that we have been forced by our state’s politicians to raise tuition, but I hate even more the possibility of letting UC slide into becoming a second-rate institution,” regent Bonnie Reiss said before the 14-4 vote.

The latest tuition hike came in the wake of a state budget that reduced UC funding by $650 million, or about 20 percent. The system could lose another $100 million if the state generates less revenue than anticipated.

The move means that for the first time, UC students will be charged more in tuition than the state contributes for the cost of their education.

The UC system, which has about 220,000 students, faces a total budget shortfall of more than $1 billion due to the state budget and rising costs, mostly for employee retirement and health care benefits.

The tuition increase will only cover about a quarter of that shortfall. The remainder will be addressed by new revenue sources, administration cost-cutting and reductions in academic programs and student services, officials said.

Even with the tuition increase, administrators said the cost of a UC education is in line with that of comparable state universities in Illinois, Michigan and Virginia — and about one-third the sticker price of private institutions such as Stanford University or the University of Southern California.

The burden of higher UC tuition is expected to fall heaviest on middle-class students who don’t qualify for financial aid.

“It’s going to be a struggle to find enough money to pay for school in the fall,” said Leigh Mason, an incoming senior at UC San Diego, who isn’t eligible for financial aid. She works as a restaurant server near campus to help pay for tuition and living expenses.

UC’s generous financial aid program will keep more than half of students from feeling the tuition increase this year, officials said. Needy students from families earning less than $80,000 have all of their tuition covered by financial aid, and the two most recent tuition increases will be waived for one year for aid-eligible students from families earning up to $120,000.

While more than a dozen students called on the regents to reject the tuition increase, chancellors of individual campuses had urged the regents to approve it, saying failure to do so would lead to fewer course offerings, the disappearance of academic programs, fewer services and longer graduation times.

“We’ve taken heavy losses on our campuses,” said George Blumenthal, chancellor of UC Santa Cruz.

The lack of additional tuition revenue would mean a further “degradation of the educational experience for students,” he said.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

More from Doug Sovern
  • Milan Moravec

    Wage concessions by University of California CSU help students and parents with increases in tuition. University of California faces massive budget shortfalls. It is dismaying Calif. Governor Brown. President Yudof and Board of Regents have, once again, been unable to agree on a package of wage, benefit concessions to close the deficit.
    Californians face foreclosure, unemployment, depressed wages, loss of retirement, medical, unemployment benefits, higher taxes: UC Board of Regents Regent Lansing, President Yudof need to demonstrated leadership by curbing wages, benefits. As a Californian, I don’t care what others earn at private, public universities. If wages better elsewhere, chancellors, vice chancellors, tenured, non tenured faculty, UCOP should apply for the positions. If wages commit employees to UC, leave for better paying position. The sky above UC will not fall.
    Californians suffer from greatest deficit of modern times. UC wages must reflect California’s ability to pay, not what others are paid. Campus chancellors, tenured & non-tenured faculty, UCOP are replaceable by more talented academics
    Wage concessions for UC President, Faculty, Chancellors, Vice Chancellors, UCOP:
    No furloughs
    18 percent reduction in UCOP salaries & $50 million cut.
    18 percent prune of campus chancellors’, vice chancellors’ salaries.
    15 percent trim of tenured faculty salaries, increased teaching load
    10 percent decrease in non-tenured faculty salaries, as well as increase research, teaching load
    100% elimination of all Academic Senate, Academic Council costs, wages.

    (17,000 UC paid employees earn more than $100,000)

    Overly optimistic predictions of future revenues do not solve the deficit. However, rose bushes bloom after pruning.

    UC Board of Regents Sherry Lansing, President Yudof can bridge the public trust gap by offering reassurances that UC salaries reflect depressed wages in California. The sky will not fall on UC

    Once again, we call upon UC President, Chancellors, Vice Chancellors, Faculty, UCOP to stand up for UC and ‘pitch in’ for Californians with deeds – wage concessions.

    • Executer1

      I agree with your analysis. Jerry Brown should focus on cutting government fat and corruption in the system rather than University funding. Brown’s cronies are stealing right and left from government but he is quite on that. Why do es not Brown reduces the salaries of University administrator and executives across the board by 20% rather than increasing the student fee. It is not the students who created this situation- politicians and government employees did with their entitlements and under the table deals.
      Wake up California!! Made a mistake voting for Brown. Same old story.!!!

      • JD

        dont worry somehow they will figure out how to blame it on the Republicans even though they are the minority in this state.

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  • Abraham

    It is sad that the UC claims this would damage quality if they cut even further. How many UC workers telecommute several days a week or more to provide daycare to their infants and toddlers? and some of them even do contracting on the side as well? You cannot being doing a days work and watch kids at the same time. It is ridiculous. The UC obviously has some fat to cut if it can allow this on the taxpayers expense. Fellow students, please write them before not only do they raise your tuition, but fee increases are likely as well. Telcommuting is not green, and it is not parent friendly…I’m sure 90% of the staff that show up to work, many with kids, have to pick up the bottom feeder’s dead weight, and deprive their own kids.

  • crackattack

    the regents also raised executive pay. many were already outrageous. business school dean makes $155,000 as faculty, works at goldman sachs for a year then returns to make $394,000 to pump students and alumni for an unnecessary building. who did he work with in New York, Bernie Madoff?

  • davey

    California has a lot of money and can afford the UC raises. The Asians has a lot of money, they drive BMWs and Mecedes. The kids that go to the UC all voted for the democrats. So, enjoy paying the higher fees.

  • Merri B

    And you, Davey, “know” that all the kids that attend UC voted for Democrats. You “know” this how – EXACTLY???

  • CalResident

    I understand this tuition raise would be hard on some students. But, this also puts them to prioritize their resources. 1000$ increase/yr == IPhone bill. So, you can easily cut your iPhone and pay for increase. 1000$ increase/yr = 20 movies (10$) + 20 club visits (20$-30$) + misc (400-200$).

    This doesn’t preclude UC system to be a responsible organization. They should reduce their costs on every department (salary + expenses) and also explore to get more resources from companies (naming rights for football/basketball).

    I would definitely want my kids to have an affordable and good UC system (not cheap so that I waste my money somewhere else).

  • Ted

    how much % increase of your tax is this 18% tuition increase ($1,068) equivalent to? each household can compute. and who does not have children? It is a very effective way to curb future generations because parents of this era is about to be crashed by this unsurrmountable pressure – six figures per child to go thru college education. Is this a pro-family move?

  • My Hoang

    It’s a legual transfer of our retirement money into your retirement money???
    We most much poorer than you guys and try to sacrifice everything to send our kids to colleges to become a bennefited part of the society in the future.

  • Rob

    “About one-third of the estimated $216 million in new tuition revenue will be used for financial aid”.

    Why should I pay more for my son so that some other student can benefit?

    That’s communism!

  • Mike


  • Jenn

    Why dont we stop paying for benefits to illegals and send them back to whereever they came from and use the money saved on education? Instead we are promoting things like the DREAM act which allows them to go to these schools and take up spots that citizens could use as well as use public funding. If they want to go to scholl in America they should pay like other foriegn students.

    • Bob

      Trolling is never attractive.

  • SickandTired

    This is worse than communism. nobody but goverment pay in communism. here is who works harder, who pays more

  • Donald Sandri

    The entire state civil service system is a joke. UC Regents top the cake with one of the highest salary and benefits packages in the world. They have the unmitigated gall to raise fees once again. Keep burying your collective heads in the sand while the the citizens revolt and throw all the greedy pigs and weak kneed politicians out of office.

  • Glow

    Liberalism costs money………get used it or vote them out!

  • Michael Felstad

    Why does the UC Foundation have over $7 billion in it?

  • John Mulligan

    Meanwhile the regents and other administrative staff make hundreds of thousands of dollars, many as high as 500k.

  • Chet Lemon

    Great. Prices crash in almost every economic sector and Universities stick it to the students. If students were not able to secure enormous loans, which are only available because the Government backs them (so the schools get paid, therefore why should they care if tuition is raised 3% or 23%), no one could afford college. No one. Quit backing the loans, and 24 hours later the Universities would be forced to slash tuition and reduce their operating costs to be in line with Reality.

  • Alicia

    As a student who will be entering a UC school in the fall, this feels like a slap in the face. California, if education is so “important,” why do you continually beat down students and families that work hard to make sure they can earn an education? I already want to try to transfer out and I haven’t even started school yet.

  • Josh Cooper

    “about one-third the sticker price of private institutions such as Stanford University or the University of Southern California.”???

    But these two private schools also don’t have a classroom over 300 students.

  • Squash The left

    About time. This state has an almost free tution system compared to others. Leftists!

  • Joaquiine

    Actually, a high tuition rate is a good thing.

    With inexpensive university costs, nobody thinks much of investing years of their lives there.

    With expensive costs, students are forced to weight the benefits of investing their years.

    Life is endless prioritizing. Its time for young people to learn that.

    • Richard Boyle

      To equate cost with quality is to make a mistake. I attened a CA community college to study nursing. I got a tip-top education and when I graduated I was ready to take on the duties of a Registered Nurse. That was back in the days when our community colleges were free.

  • kareny

    Ted, a college education is a privledge not a right. These lazy spoiled rotten students can get good grades in high school to get scholarships. They can get pell grants, financial aid, jobs. I have a friend who supported himself through college with 3 jobs & got a PHD. A parent’s responsibility to support their children is from kindergarten through the 12th grade. In addition Ted, since these are public universities, the taxpayers of California are subsidizing all these spoiled rotten lazy students education.

    • Marco

      Finally, a person who understands the concept of higher education! Higher education is a privilege. My brother, whom also attends UC Berkeley, hates it there but is working his way through. He’s sick and tired of these whiny ass kids living on mom and dad’s dime. But in order to get ahead in life, he’s got to work through it.

  • kareny

    Executor1, of course these students should pay more. These spoiled rotten lazy students need to realize that nothing is free & that we taxpayers are subsidizing their college education since they’re attending a public university. Have you heard some of these spoiled rotten students who think that they’re entitled & they deserve everything they think they’re entitled to. Again, a college education IS a privledge NOT a right. Where is it in the California State constitution & US constritution, that a college education is a right-NO WHERE.

  • middleclasscow

    “UC’s generous financial aid program will keep more than half of students from feeling the tuition increase this year, officials said. Needy students from families earning less than $80,000 have all of their tuition covered by financial aid”

    While they increase tuition to students whose are not eligible of financial aid, not rich people that can go to private sch, they give out tuition to students from families earning less than %80,000, like half of all studens. Come on people, do we see problem here? one students are forceing to pay two students tuition. what a ****

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