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SUNY Board Approves Tuition Increase

First in Seven Years


Albany - The State University of New York Board of Trustees today approved an increase in undergraduate tuition for the first time in seven years.

The new tuition schedule included an increase in undergraduate tuition of $950 per year for New York State residents and an increase of $2,000 per year for out-of-state undergraduates. Tuition for in-state undergraduates is now $4,350 per year and out-of-state undergraduate tuition is $10,300. Today's increases do not affect the community colleges.

"In order to maintain the high quality of the education we provide to our students and in the face of the unprecedented fiscal crisis facing our state, the Board has followed the recommendation of the Legislature and found it necessary to increase tuition," said Board Chair Thomas F. Egan. "Even though an increase in tuition is necessary at this time, the State University of New York continues to be an unsurpassed value in higher education. The cost of tuition and fees at SUNY is well below the level of public universities in the Northeast, while the quality of a SUNY education equals or surpasses that of our peers."

"The effects of the national recession and Sept. 11 have been financially devastating for our state treasury. As a result, a tuition increase is necessary in order to continue to provide our students the quality education they need and deserve," said SUNY Chancellor Robert L. King. "SUNY is also committed to ensuring access to a high quality education. With that in mind, we have maintained undergraduate tuition and fees at SUNY that are lower than the tuition and fee levels at all comparable doctoral institutions in the New England and Mid-Atlantic regions and all but one of the Big Ten schools."

For the upcoming fall, tuition at the Big Ten schools averages $5,725 and tuition and fees average $6,958. At New England and Mid-Atlantic schools average tuition is $5,813 and tuition and fees are $7,771.

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The Board also approved the financial plan for the State University for the upcoming fiscal year. The financial plan calls for level year-to-year funding for the state-operated and statutory colleges. University officials, however, warned these budget levels may not be sustainable going forward.

The budget provided to the University by the Legislature called for what the University believes is an unachievable amount of revenue to be derived from out of state tuition.

University enrollment professionals estimate the impact of the Legislature's proposed $4700 increase in out of state undergraduate tuition would actually drive many of those students away from the University, creating a revenue shortfall of nearly $105 million.

As a result, the Chancellor recommended an increase for undergraduate out-of-state tuition of $2,000. "While we believe this will encourage out-of-state students to stay with SUNY, we will still face a shortfall in revenue in the $30-36 million range," King said.

"The Legislature's budget has caused the University to face a possible shortfall of $36 million dollars compared to the current year's operating budget," said King. "This shortfall may require further management actions. We will continue to look for ways to reduce our operating costs without compromising our commitment to our students. Because personnel costs are such a large part of our operating budget, however, employment levels may need to be adjusted to stay within our financial resources. Regardless of the course we may have to take, we will maintain our high quality."

Prospective students continue to show strong interest in SUNY. Enrollment deposits for the fall are ahead of their targets across state-operated campuses by almost 9 percent.

Transfer applications and applications for the freshman class at the state-operated campuses are both up compared to last year. Applicants for the upcoming fall with high school averages above 95.5 are up, as are applicants with high school averages above 90.5.

In addition to providing tuition levels which are far lower than institutions in neighboring states and the Big Ten, New York provides access to higher education through the Tuition Assistance Program.

Thanks to TAP, families with adjusted gross incomes of up to $49,500 will have the full amount of the increase covered by their grant.


The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive university system in the United States with a total enrollment of 403,000 students in 6,400 fields of study on 64 campuses. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunity, visit www.suny.edu.