Monday, November 20, 2017

UT politburo moves forward on the tuition hike we predicted....

"No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon."
Matthew 6:24

This happened a week ago, but is still worth noting:
The University is collecting student input on a possible 2 percent tuition increase until Thursday.

The preliminary recommendations to increase tuition for the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 academic years were announced by UT’s Tuition Policy Advisory Committee last Wednesday in an email that included an online feedback survey.

Under the recommendations, tuition would increase in both the 2018 and 2019 fall semesters by about $100 for in-state undergraduates and by about $370 for non-resident undergraduates. In-state graduate students would pay about $90 more both years, while tuition for out-of-state graduate students would increase by about $180 both years.

Executive Vice President Maurie McInnis, who co-chairs UT’s tuition committee, said the tuition increases are necessary because the University is implementing a $20 million budget cut due to decreased state funding.

“Even with a tuition increase, we are behind the amount needed just to keep doing everything that we are doing,” McInnis said. “It’s not new money and it doesn’t even make up for everything that we were cut. It just makes that cut less intense.”

The tuition increases are projected to bring an additional $10 million to the University, according to UT’s tuition webpage. Funding from the increases would go towards financial aid as well as operational and inflation costs, McInnis said.


After the survey closes Thursday, the committee will help UT President Gregory Fenves draft an official tuition proposal to be approved by the UT System Board of Regents (*) in February.

[Author's note: Emphasis added.]
* -- This is an extraordinary statement.  Note that they said "to be approved" not "subject to approval.  NEWSFLASH: Greg Fenves works for the Board of Regents, NOT the other way around.

 A few thoughts:

  • That it took us a week to address this story points to why there's a very good chance UT gets away with this: There are so many major stories constantly breaking that it's going to be difficult for any outside groups to put sustained pressure on the university.
  • That being said, there are signs this proposal is wildly unpopular on campus.  We suspect that if on-campus groups were to fight the tuition hike, they could win.  At a minimum, they could make it very embarrassing politically.
  • Dan Patrick has been remarkably silent on this subject compared to the last time UT pulled this stunt two years ago.
  • Political correctness on college campuses is the natural result of them having more money than they know what to do with; step 1 is to eliminate their ability to raise tuition at will.
Bottom Line: This was so predicable (which is why we predicted it).

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