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Az universities near top — in price

Report: Arizona schools posted some of nation’s biggest tuition increases

Fueled by state budget cuts to higher education, tuition increases of 49 percent at the University of Arizona and 44 percent at Arizona State University landed the two schools in the top 20 for tuition hikes from 2008 to 2010.

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Jul 10, 2012, 12:52 pm
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This is such a tough issue for everyone concerned - the students, parents, the universities, the legislature, our citizens.  Yes, Arizona’s recent tuition increases have been among the highest nationally - but that’s because they started out at the very bottom of tuition rates, nationally.  When Arizona first established its university system it mandated that tuition remain low ( “as nearly free as possible” in the words of the Constitution), so that everyone could access higher education.  For decades our State funding made that possible, right up through the end of the last century. 

But when State funding began to dry up, our universities were forced to turn more and more to private funding, and the only other possible source of support, tuition increases.  They have gone from being State-funded institutions to State-assisted, and students during this two-year window of time (2008-2010) have suffered egregious financial strain. 

The good news is that our schools remain in the middle of the pack in terms of tuition rates; the bad news is that the rates have increased so drastically over such a short period of time.  Still, in these hard times a good education is more valuable than ever and I know our institutions will continue to do everything they can to maintain program quality and spare our students further hardship.  I can only hope our legislators will do the same.
Elizabeth Ervin, former Vice Provost for Academic Affairs, The University of Arizona

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