ASU Tuition to Increase Again; Up Almost 6%

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Arkansas State University announces that tuition will be going up yet again, this time at an average of 5.9%.

The ASU Board of Trustees approved the increase for ASU-Jonesboro Tuesday after almost 2 hours of discussion in Centennial Hall in the Student Union.  The increase will go into effect June 30, just in time for the second summer semester.  Tuition for the other ASU campuses will go up as well.

Proponents of the increase, such as ASU System Vice President Jennus Burton, contend that the cost of attending ASU-Jonesboro is still less than that of other universities in the Natural State as well as below the national average.

While Burton may have a point, parents paying the tuition costs aren't thrilled.  One parent told Region 8 News that he felt the tuition increase was unnecessary, suggesting that the institution eliminate certain costly programs before increasing tuition yet again.

ASU has been hurt by state budget cuts and the future holds some challenging possibilities, with one scenario potentially seeing an additional 7 percent of ASU's budget being cut.  ASU Jonesboro has an educational and general budget of $122.1 million with an auxiliary budget of $24.3 million.

Also approved at the meeting were multiple pay increases for ASU employees including a 1 percent cost of living increase, a 1 percent merit increase for teaching faculty and a 2 percent pay increase for all ASU-Jonesboro employees.