Iowa universities all eye fall tuition hikes

Two months before the fall semester starts at Iowa’s public universities, the Board of Regents this week will hold a first consideration of raising tuition at all three of its institutions — with the University of Iowa and Iowa State University proposing a 3.5 percent hike for state resident undergraduates.

The University of Northern Iowa, which for the past two years has kept tuition rates frozen, is seeking a 1.5 percent increase for both resident and non-resident undergrads.

“Our universities need an appropriate amount of resources to continue to provide high quality education,” board President Mike Richards said during a regents meeting earlier this month. “But we also want to keep our universities as accessible and affordable as possible for Iowans. There are many factors to consider.”

All three campuses held tuition and fees flat during the unprecedented 2020-2021 academic year complicated and compromised by the pandemic. The pause came despite the regents rolling out a five-year tuition plan in 2018 promising stepped annual increases at the UI and ISU of at least 3 percent, possibly more.

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