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VOL. 40 | NO. 25 | Friday, June 17, 2016

UT Board to consider 2.2 percent tuition hike

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NASHVILLE (AP) - The University of Tennessee board of trustees will vote on tuition increases that system President Joe DiPietro says are the lowest in decades.

"Shout it from the mountaintop," DiPietro said. "As always, action by the UT Board of Trustees is required for fee or tuition increases and, therefore, nothing is official until after the board meets."

The full UT board will vote Wednesday on a plan to cap tuition increases to 2.2 percent in most cases for the proposed 2016-2017 fiscal year budget, the Times Free Press reported (http://bit.ly/28JAUyY).

The 2.2 percent cap, also called the "maintenance fee," applies to most in-state and out-of-state undergraduates. The change doesn't affect students in UT-Martin's "Soar in Four" program, which consists of restructured fees and is meant to incentivize completing college in four years. Undergraduates in UT-Knoxville's "Take 15, Graduate in 4" program who were admitted in 2013-2014 will see a 3 percent tuition increase.

The majority of fees also will not increase, UT officials said. For fees where an increase is proposed, the net increase at each campus will range from nothing up to 3 percent.

The low tuition increases may be attributed to state lawmakers approving $72.2 million for salaries and inflation for the UT and Tennessee Board of Regents systems.

"We need to continue to work to make our colleges and universities affordable for students. If there is to be a tuition increase, the lowest the better," Rep. Kevin Dunlap said.

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