KNOXVILLE – The University of Tennessee Board of Trustees Subcommittee on Tuition, Fees and Financial Aid recommended today that a record fourth year of low, self-limiting tuition increases move on for consideration by the Finance and Administration Committee.
The Finance and Administration Committee will meet as part of the UT Board of Trustees annual meeting June 21-22 in Knoxville. The committee will decide whether to send the recommendations to the full board for consideration.
If the trustees approve the recommendations on June 22, UT Knoxville and UT Chattanooga would not increase tuition for undergraduate students for fiscal year 2018-2019.
UT Martin would have a 3 percent tuition increase, which is within the Tennessee Higher Education Commission range of 3 percent or less.
UT Chief Financial Officer David Miller said the university’s focus on efficiency and effectiveness along with an increase in state support for higher education by Gov. Bill Haslam and the state legislature has enabled UT to keep tuition and fees low for the past three years.
“This is the first time since the mid-80s that we’ve had a 0 percent increase in tuition and this will the fourth year in a row of tuition increases,” Miller said. “Additionally, the University of Tennessee can be very proud that 44 percent of undergraduates leave with no debt. That beats the national average of 30 percent.”
UT Board Vice Chair Raja Jubran praised Miller and the chief business officers on each campus for their work on the low tuition increase.
“Zero percent increase is an accomplishment,” he said. “I know it takes a lot of work to balance the budgets. We appreciate it and the students really appreciate it.”
At UT Knoxville, students could see some fee increases, if the trustees give their approval. The student program fee would increase by $22 per student while the capital fee would increase by $14 per student.
Any fee increases at UT Chattanooga would cover increased operating costs for specific programs.
UT Martin students also could see some fee increases, if approved. UT Martin’s program and service fee would increase by $32 per student, as approved by the Student Government Association, to enhance programming to a multicultural perspective. UT Martin also would establish a green fee of $10 per student, at the request of the Student Government Association, to create a Center for Sustainability.
UT Martin saw a 20.8 percent drop in enrollment from 2010 to 2016, which has led to a budget shortfall. The campus has created a number of strategies to grow enrollment and have found some success, Miller said. In 2017, Martin saw a 1.4 percent increase in enrollment and in 2018, anticipates an increase of 2 percent.
In March, the UT Board of Trustees approved not increasing UT Health Science Center tuition for in-state or out-of-state students. Online and College of Graduate Health Sciences students also did not see a tuition increase. Students in the Colleges of Nursing and Pharmacy saw a 1 percent in-state tuition increase while students in the Colleges of Dentistry and Health Professions had a 2 percent increase.
About the University of Tennessee
The University of Tennessee is a statewide system of higher education with campuses in Knoxville, Chattanooga, Martin and Memphis; the UT Space Institute in Tullahoma; the UT Institute of Agriculture with a presence in every Tennessee county; and the statewide Institute for Public Service. The UT system manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory through its UT-Battelle partnership; enrolls about 50,000 students statewide; produces about 10,000 new graduates every year; and represents more than 370,000 alumni around the world.