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Likely Rising Tuition Fees Have U Of M Students Upset

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Getting a degree from the University of Minnesota could cost students more next year.

The Board of Regents will vote on a plan to increase tuition at its meeting Monday.

In-state students would pay an extra five percent next year for tuition, which is about $244.

Out-of-state students would pay more than eight percent for tuition next year, which amounts to about $563.

These increases, however, would actually feel more like a 12 percent increase, because scholarship money, paid for by federal stimulus funds, has run out. Students will likely have to pick up that part of their tuition tab.

“I’m paying a lot for it. It seems unfair. It feels like I’m being cheated,” said junior Jory Sullivan, who’s majoring in business.

He and his buddy, Nicholas Ditto, who is also a junior at the University of Minnesota, say they’ll have to work harder to pay for their education.

“Well, not happy about it, but you got to pay what you got to pay,” Ditto said.

State aid to the university is getting cut by $71 million, so the university has to make up for the shortfall.

“You have to pay more for tuition because these state cuts are really taking a big bite out of the university’s budget,” said Robert Bruininks, president of the university. “If we want to keep the quality of education up for university students, we’re going to have to ask students to participate.

Bruininks says major expense cuts are helping save money.

Several faculty positions and non-teaching jobs have been eliminated, and there have been wage freezes too.

“We have really done an extraordinary job of driving cost down at the University of Minnesota hundreds of millions of dollars,” Bruininks said.

He said that students might see a refund next year. It would happen if the university gets more from the state than what it expects to get.

“It’s definitely a tough time, but when things get tough, you don’t give up. You keep going,” Sullivan said.

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