CMU Sees Half of the Average University Tuition Hike
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.- Paying for college continues to prove to be a problem for many. However, here on the Western Slope, the wallets of our college kids may be a little more full compared to others.
According to a new report by the State Higher Education Executive Officers Association, the average amount that students at public colleges pay in tuition increased by a record 8.3 percent last year.
At Colorado Mesa University however, hikes are much lower than the national averages, sitting at less than 5% a year for the last three years.
Currently, the average student at CMU pays $6,700 a year.
“I think that it’s a conscious choice that you should make when choosing what school you go to,” said Mackenzie Eikamp, an out-of-state sophomore at CMU who chose the school because of their cheap price.
President of Colorado Mesa University Tim Foster says the staff at his institution work their hardest to keep the cost of attending CMU as low as possible.
“Three years ago, we got almost $24 million from the state of Colorado. Today we get 18,” said Foster. “At a time that we saw a 25 percent reduction in our state support you didn’t see a 25 percent increase in tuition.”
By utilizing simple ideas, like teaching all of their summer classes in one or two buildings and shutting down the rest for the season, the school is able to save $500,000 a year. This helps keep the tuition as low as possible for these students.
“Its good for students, it’s good for people in this region and we try just to manage conservatively and keep a lid on our costs,” said Foster. “We get into average students loans and half of our students borrow zero.”
Leaving students like Eikamp financially ready to take on her next journey: medical school.
“It was definitely a good choice because you will incur a lot of debt if you go to medical school and just like in my choice to come here, there are always other options,” said Eikamp. “So you need to just go out and pursue those other options with making your education affordable.”
Foster added that that since CMU is people an intensive institution, they're always looking for ways to improve their school.
They have a tab on their website that asks students how they can reduce the costs without impacting the quality of their education.