Tuition costs on the rise
This academic year at the university saw a noticeable increase in tuition and fees. The increase was by more than two percent, according to an article in the News Journal.
Students who have noticed the raised tuition have had mixed reactions to the change. Kimia Arsani, a junior music performance major, was surprised to see the raise in costs.
“I think what it was before was more reasonable, without the extra two percent,” Arsani said.
She explained that students in the United States already seem to pay too much for a college education, and that she had not previously noticed any increases in tuition during her time at Delaware.
Daniel Farmer, a senior environmental studies student, agreed that the rising cost of postsecondary education in the country is an issue, but felt the university is still competitive from a pricing standpoint when compared with other universities.
“A lot of private schools that would have given me similar academic challenges cost so much more than University of Delaware, so I think Delaware is doing okay,” Farmer said.
Media relations coordinator Peter Bothum said the adjustment in costs is not unusual.
“Every year we take a hard look at the cost of educating our students and make adjustments so we can continue to provide a top flight education,” Bothum said.
Bothum highlighted the university’s position on lists by Kiplinger magazine, Money magazine and The Princeton Review, distinguishing it as a school that provides considerable value to its students.
Bothum said financial aid and scholarships consistently increase to a higher degree than the tuition. In the previous academic year, the university awarded more than $93 million in grants and scholarship, an amount up 20 percent from two years ago, he said.
Arsani admitted that a higher price could potentially be rationalized depending on where the money went.
“If it’s towards more scholarships, that would maybe justify it,” Arsani said.
For Farmer, the question of what would validate more increase in costs is variable.
“It depends on who you ask,” Farmer said.
In his opinion, it is impossible to use extra expenses to favor any one department or area without causing problems.
Ultimately, though, Farmer said the tuition rise should not be surprising.
“Tuition covers such a small percentage of all the resources available to us as it is, and I know that a lot of our outside sources of funding have been decreasing in terms of the amount of donations and so forth,” he said.
According to Farmer, tuition covers less than half the cost of the the Delaware undergraduate experience.
Farmer said the tuition hike is consistent with the idea that a “college education doesn’t ever come bare bones,” meaning the amount students pay will always include covering the valuable opportunities students receive alongside their degree.
Bothum also reiterated how a well-rounded college experience that offers rigorous academics, top notch faculty and research and study abroad opportunities, is what students are seeking at the university.
“We provide those experiences, and we continue to invest to improve those experiences,” Bothum said.