MSU board adopts $1.2 billion general fund budget, sets tuition
The Michigan State University Board of Trustees recently approved next year’s spending plan and voted to increase tuition a composite 2.8 percent for in-state, undergraduate students for the 2014-15 academic year.
That matches last year’s increase, which was the lowest since 2005. State appropriations, which account for most of the balance of General Fund revenues, increased 5.9 percent this year but remain at approximately half the inflation-adjusted amount per MSU student as they were a decade earlier.
Under the 2014-15 budget approved by the MSU board at its June 20 meeting, tuition for in-state, lower division students – freshmen and sophomores – will increase by 2.6 percent, while tuition for in-state, upper division students – juniors and seniors – will rise by 2.9 percent.
While addressing additional financial constraints including faculty and student wages, the new budget aims to sharpen focus on student opportunity and institutional competitiveness.
“Whether we’re talking about students, faculty or staff our value lies in bringing the most talented, passionate people to our campus and affording them the greatest opportunities for success,” President Lou Anna K. Simon said. “This budget was designed to enhance the long- and short-term value to our students and stakeholders through greater financial aid, continued focus on efficiency and effectiveness, and investment in academic competitiveness.”
The 2014-15 budget reflects MSU’s commitment to offering Michigan residents a world-class higher education. The spending plan anticipates supporting student success through a variety of means, including investments in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) programs and academic support services. Enhancing high-impact learning opportunities, including undergraduate research and entrepreneurship, is another component.
Attracting and retaining top faculty is critical both to providing exceptional education and to maintaining the university’s reputation as one of the world’s top 100 research universities. Michigan State today records some $500 million in external research awards and is targeting high-priority areas of research including plant, environmental and molecular sciences and biomedical and engineering disciplines.
A portion of the 2014-15 budget will be earmarked for faculty salary increases, as MSU today ranks 11th of 12 Big Ten institutions. The plan calls for a 2 percent merit allocation, a 0.5 percent college-level market increase and a 0.5 percent central market increment for implementation Oct. 1. Subsequently, a 1 percent merit allocation is planned for January implementation for key faculty and staff.
Michigan State strives to remain accessible to an economically diverse student body. Fewer students graduate with debt than state and national peers, and the debt they do carry is lower than state and national averages. To help preserve access for Michigan residents, approximately $115 million of the 2014-15 budget is dedicated to student financial aid – a 4 percent increase over last year. Financial aid support continues to increase at a rate greater than resident undergraduate tuition and fees, amounting to a 65 percent increase over the past five years.
Under the new budget, resident lower division students will pay $11.25 more per credit hour, compared to last year. Resident upper division student will pay $13.75 more per credit hour. Overall, resident, lower division students taking a full load of courses – 30 credit hours – would pay about $13,200 per year. Resident upper division students would pay $14,708.
Tuition for nonresident undergraduate students will increase 3.6 percent. That would be an increase of $41 per credit hour. A student taking a full load of classes would pay $34,965 per year.
Graduate students’ tuition will increase by 4 percent. In-state graduate students would see an increase of $25 per credit hour; nonresidents an increase of $49 per credit hour.
For more information, visit www.budget.msu.edu/.