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Tuition freeze extended at PA state-owned universities

Students at the state's universities will not see tuition increase

The tuition freeze at Pennsylvania’s state colleges and universities will continue after the unanimous vote by the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education governing board.

The board voted last week to keep basic tuition at $7,716 for the fourth consecutive year.

East Stroudsburg University Interim President Kenneth Long said he and the other state system presidents support the decision to keep the price tag more accessible for in-state students, but schools may need to supplement their funding in other ways.

"Between 70 and 80 percent of our revenue does come from tuition and fees," he said. "So that does put more pressure on us."

In a release on the vote, the board of governors said they are waiting for the release of $75 million in funding for the state system. Long said the funds would help "backfill any gap a tuition increase might cover."

The state system has not raised tuition in three years, partly to encourage enrollment. But higher education enrollment rates are dropping, and Long said tuition is only one reason.

"There are other competing factors. The pandemic is a big one in the last two years but there are other competing factors that we compete against," he said. "The value of an education is something that we have to continue to make sure we enforce and communicate to particularly high school graduates but those returning, the older adults."

Sarah Scinto is the local host of All Things Considered on WVIA. She is a Connecticut native and graduate of King’s College in Wilkes-Barre, and has previously covered Northeastern Pennsylvania for The Scranton Times-Tribune, The Citizens’ Voice and Greater Pittston Progress.