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6/10/2013 2:51:00 PM Email this articlePrint this article 
VU president says tuition proposal both fair and modest
VINCENNES - Vincennes University President Dick Helton says VU will remain among the most affordable options for Indiana college students, under a proposed tuition plan to be considered by the Board of Trustees on June 26.

Speaking at a public hearing on Friday about VU's proposed tuition and fee increase, Helton said, "We believe this increase is fair, it is modest, and keep in mind that we will still offer the lowest tuition and fees among residential institutions in our state. I think that speaks very well for Vincennes University, its administration, faculty and staff, and our Board of Trustees."

No one spoke against the proposed increase at the public hearing that was also broadcast at multiple VU sites in the state.

Under the proposal, VU would raise tuition and fees $4.60 per credit hour in 2013-2014 and $5.20 per credit hour in 2014-15. If the Board approves the proposal, tuition and fees for full-time, in-state students would increase to $5,022 in 2013-2014 and top out at $5,178 in 2014-2015.

Currently students pay $4,884.

Helton said that VU would remain the most affordable residential college in the state and offer the second lowest tuition overall. For example, VU's 2013-14 projected annual tuition and fees would be less than half that at Indiana University-Bloomington.

Helton said the increase is needed to cover rising operational costs that include teaching and staffing, repair and rehabilitation of facilities, maintenance, utilities, and instructional technology and equipment.

"We are very heavily into career and technical education. That kind of equipment is much more costly than that needed by some other schools not as involved in career and technical education. You have to look at the different missions and where you want to take programming, particularly when you are looking at programs that are going to impact our state in terms of jobs and manufacturing jobs. When you factor all that into the budget, you are always thinking about maintaining a quality program and the need for quality facilities and quality equipment," Helton said.

One of VU's strengths, according to Helton, is its efficiency. He said that VU's operating cost per total full-time equivalent enrollment is $7,426 compared to a state average of $12,959.

"I think we have been very fair over the years. We are very sensitive to tuition increases, our students, and their needs," Helton said.

The proposed increase in tuition and fees will be recommended by the administration to the Board of Trustees at its June 26 meeting.

The public hearing in Vincennes was made available by two-way video conference to the VU Jasper Campus, Indianapolis Aviation Technology Center, Gibson County Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Logistics, and the Plainfield Logistics Training and Education Center.





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