UMass Approves Undergraduate Fee Hike Of Up To 5 Percent

The University of Massachusetts Board of Trustees voted Wednesday to raise the cost of attending the school system by up to 5 percent for in-state undergraduates, the first increase in three years.

Students would pay an additional $552 to $580, depending on which of the system's five campuses they attend.

University officials said they had no choice, given the level of funding the system is expected to receive for the fiscal year beginning July 1.

"We spend about half of what Boston University spends to educate a student," outgoing UMass President Robert Caret told WBUR. "And if you look at us compared to Harvard, we spend about a fourth of what Harvard does, maybe a fifth. So I don't know how efficient state government wants us to become, but we're pretty damn efficient."

UMass officials had requested $578 million, saying it would let them freeze tuition again.

State lawmakers have approved increases that fall short of that goal as Massachusetts struggles to close a $1.8 billion budget gap.

Caret said he hopes to limit the hike depending on the final budget.

With reporting by The Associated Press and the WBUR Newsroom

This article was originally published on June 17, 2015.



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