Tuition is rising again, and there are a number of increases and cuts to many school programs.
On May 30, Salt Lake Community College sent an email to students and faculty regarding the two percent tuition increase for the 2019-2020 year. According to the email, tuition for full-time students will rise by $33.75 per semester, while student fees will also go up $9.
SLCC Student Association President Mary Flanagan says the increase came due to several reasons, including salary raises the Utah State Legislature did not fully cover and increases in funding for certain school programs.
“If that funding hadn’t come through, we probably would’ve started seeing wait times [for the Center for Health and Counseling] start creeping up to between one and two weeks this year,” Flanagan says.
Studies show anxiety, depression, and suicide among young adults has been on the rise in the last several years. And according to Intermountain Healthcare, LGBTQ youth experience higher rates of depression and suicide, especially in Utah.
Flanagan says tackling this issue at SLCC is a priority for student leaders.
“Students on the fee board last year were also really concerned about how well we’re supporting our LGBTQ+ community,” she says. “The $2 to help open a new Gender and Sexuality Student Resource Center shows our commitment to this population.”
However, even with the two percent increase in tuition, some programs will not see more money. In fact, there were two programs that will have funding decreased: Student Center Support, and Arts and Cultural Events (ACE).
Curtis Larsen, chair of the ACE Committee, says although there was a 25 cent decrease in program funding, the school also lowered the credit amount to be considered a full-time student, which would in turn increase the amount in fees that students pay.
“By reducing the rate at which a student receives full credits … we expect this change to be revenue neutral,” Larsen says.
The school did have to release a correction, as their original email erroneously stated that ACE funding would be decreased by $3.75, when the number is actually 25 cents.
Student Center Support saw a decrease of 50 cents, while other programs like childcare and athletics saw increases of $1 and $2, respectively.