CSU Considers More Tuition Hikes

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Students study outside their classes on the University of California at Irvine campus.

    The California State University system may raise tuition again. Chancellor Charles Reed is calling for a midyear tuition hike of 5 percent for undergraduates, credential candidates and graduate students.

    That would mean undergraduate students would pay $2,220 for the spring semester, up from $2,115 this fall.

    Reed is also recommending an additional 10 percent increase starting in fall 2011.

    University trustees are expected to vote on the tuition hikes at their meeting in Long Beach next month.

    CSU has raised tuition four times since 2007, as it struggles with a drop in state funding.

    University officials tell the San Francisco Chronicle the proposed increases for this year and next fall would help restore thousands of courses and expand services.

    "Last year, we did not serve our students well, and everybody knows that," said Robert Turnage, CSU's assistant vice chancellor for budget, referring to the elimination of courses across all 23 of the system's campuses and employee furloughs. "We were cutting corners everywhere...It was an awful situation all around, and everyone suffered."

    The new tuition hikes would raise about an additional $175 million annually for CSU.

    The current annual tuition of $4,230 for undergraduates would rise by $654 next fall to $4,884 if both fee hikes are approved.

    The cost of a credential -- needed for professions such as teaching -- would rise to $5,670 from the current $4,909. And graduate programs would increase to $6,018 from the current $5,214.

    The proposed increases are not going over well with some students.

    "It's going to be very difficult, especially in this economy...," said Chris Chavez, president of the California State Student Association and a political science major at Long Beach State. "CSU is hurting students by doing this."

    Reed is planning to ask state lawmakers for additional funding to avert the tuition hike.