The tuition increase plan will be discussed at the UC Board of Regents’ meeting on Nov. 18-20 at UC San Francisco Mission Bay and aims to stabilize tuition and fees, according to a UC statement released this past Thursday. According to the UCSA petition, the association will “actively lobby” UCOP and the Board of Regents, will write letters to Senators and Congressmen “expressing the resolution’s sentiments” and will conduct a system-wide survey to gather input about President Barack Obama’s “Plan to Make College More Affordable” and university rating system, and relay the feedback to the US Department of Education.
UCOP spokesperson Brooke Converse said the UC would work to minimize the increase in tuition by seeking additional funds from the state.
“We are aware of the petition,” Converse said. “No one likes a tuition increase, least of all the University, but we hope to work with students to advocate for additional funding from the state to offset the potential increase.”
According to the UC, state funds were cut by nearly $1 billion since 2007, and the university responded by reducing costs throughout the system that saved $660 million. Despite state funding increasing over the last two years, the UC still faces a long-term gap between projected revenues and its basic funding needs for educational programs.
The UC still remains $460 million below its 2007–‘08 level of state funding, and is below what it needs to continue to meet its commitment to admitting all eligible California students and to “preserve the quality of a UC education,” according to the UC statement released last week.
The UC also stated that additional state funding could allow UC to avoid a tuition increase.
According to first-year pre-biology student Ashley Tringali, paying more tuition right now is justified and will likely pay off later on.
“I have been reading articles about the changes that they want to make and I feel like right now we might have to pay more, but I am investing my money into a good education and hopefully I’ll be able to use that education,” Tringali said.
However, first-year economics and global studies double major Kayla Saliba said she agrees with UCSA’s petition to put financial responsibility onto the state.
“The state should not be cutting the money. But if that is not an option, then if you are cutting the funds that the school is getting, what is going to happen to the school?” Saliba said. “Already students and teachers are scrambling for resources. How are we going to pay for things that the university needs?”
Tringali said increasing tuition to improve the UC is a worthwhile investment.
“I know the UCs … and especially here at UC Santa Barbara, we have great research and opportunities and connections,” Tringali said. “I feel like if I need to pay more now, yeah it might be bad financially for me right now, but I know it is going to pay off later. I am totally fine with investing in my future.”
But according to Saliba, the state is obliged to provide affordable education for their public universities.
“We should be getting more money, but it should not be coming from the students,” Saliba said, “it should be coming from the government, and that is a basic thing I feel we need to start doing as a nation.”