CU's latest proposed tuition hike signals trend of students paying more

11:07 PM, Jan 11, 2012   |    comments
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Tuition for full-time students in the College of Arts and Sciences would go up by 15.7 percent. The increase, if approved, would add up to an extra $1,203 per year.

The CU Board of Regents will make a final decision in the spring.

If this sounds familiar, it's because CU has raised tuition four times in the last four years.

The increases have ranged between 8.8 percent and 9.3 percent each year.

Many believe the reason for state colleges is to make a degree affordable: Taxpayers cover some of the cost and Colorado gets a more educated and qualified workforce.

As the state economy has dropped over the past few years, so have taxpayer contributions.

Ten years ago, two-thirds of public college for the average in-state student was paid for by the taxpayers. Today, it has flipped and students pay two-thirds while the state pays a third.

If this trend continues, students will keep paying more as the state pays less. Many in higher education worry it's only a matter of time before the state's share is zero.

A decade ago, the average annual cost to go to a public four-year university in Colorado was $3,128. Today, the cost is more than double that at $8,370 and rising.

These increases are not stopping students from going to college - there are more students in the system than ever before.

The difference now is debt. Colorado students are taking on almost 50 percent more student loans than they were just five years ago.

(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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