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Saturday, Aug 17, 2019

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OHIO trustees set tuition and fee rates, discuss financial aid


The Ohio University Board of Trustees approved tuition and fee rates for the first cohort of students under The OHIO Guarantee and discussed the impact of new financial aid initiatives at meetings on the Athens Campus.

Executive Vice President and Provost Pam Benoit and Vice President for Finance and Administration Steve Golding, addressing a joint meeting of the Resources and Academics Committees, explained that the University’s stated priorities – student affordability, employee compensation, capital planning and OHIO’s innovation strategy – comprise the backbone around which University leadership will construct next year’s budget.

A preliminary look at the FY 2016 budget illustrated the challenges of funding these priorities, while still having enough to support the needs of individual colleges and inflationary increases throughout the University. It also contextualized the planning that went into setting new tuition and fee rates, with tuition cited as one among several primary sources of revenue. 

The 5.1 percent increase for incoming students – the first cohort under The OHIO Guarantee – falls under the state Guaranteed Tuition Cap of 6 percent for the first cohort covered under this new initiative. This comprehensive price includes not just tuition and the general fee, as was the case in the past, but also other student fees – including technology, orientation, graduation and most course fees.

The rate resulting from the increase will hold constant for 12 consecutive semesters, along with rates for room and board, and should help OHIO maintain its relative position with regard to tuition and fees among public universities in the state.

Golding emphasized that The OHIO Guarantee serves the purpose of making the true cost of a college education more transparent. The program also helps to maintain the full value of student financial aid, since awards are set using the highest amount a student will pay rather than at a first-year tuition rate that will likely increase while the aid does not in a non-Guarantee environment.

To insure full transparency for all students, the Board also adopted a tuition and general fee increase of 2 percent for continuing students not covered under the Guarantee. This assumes a legislative tuition cap of 2 percent and will be used for planning purposes until the state legislature approves the biennial state budget.

Benoit explained how financial aid plays a critical role moving forward as a means of bolstering accessibility and affordability. The University invested $2.1 million last year into the new Signature Scholarship Program, which has already seen positive results in its first full year of implementation. This includes record freshmen enrollments, with significant gains among multicultural, Appalachian and first-generation students.

Additionally, in order to help mitigate the effect of the tuition increase, the Gateway Assist and Signature Assist Programs will increase financial aid to the University’s neediest continuing students by the full cost of that increase ($211). This is in addition to the awards that the same population received last year to hold them harmless from the FY 2015 increase.

For more information on The OHIO Guarantee and the University’s investments into financial aid, visit

http://www.ohio.edu/compass/stories/14-15/1/OHIO-improves-access.cfm

The Board approved:

A resolution to adopt tuition, fee and rate increases for new, degree-seeking undergraduates on the Athens Campus for the academic year starting in fall 2015. Students in the first cohort of The OHIO Guarantee will have increases of 5.1 percent for tuition and other fees, 5.3 percent for Residential Housing rates and 1.5 percent for Culinary Services rates. Continuing students will see increases of 2 percent, 3.5 percent, and 1 percent for tuition/other fees, Residential Housing Rates and Culinary Services rates, respectively. There will not be an increase to the Non-resident Surcharge for any student. 

A resolution to grant an easement to Columbia Gas of Ohio, Inc., in order for them to be able to install, operate and maintain a medium pressure gas line and related utility infrastructure that will meet the energy needs of the University. The easement measures approximately 20 feet in width and 4,500 feet in length.

A resolution to approve the University to undertake design and construction, including the receipt of bids or proposals and awarding of contracts, for the Gas Line Upgrade project. The resolution also increases the previously approved budget for the project ($5 million) by $500,000.

A resolution to contract for consulting services to obtain a revised EPA permit and to undertake design and construction for temporary campus boilers.   

A resolution to approve the University to undertake design for the Back South Demolition Phase I (design through bid document phase); Bobcat Lane/Baker University Center Turnaround and Oxbow Trail Rehabilitation (design phase); Bush Airport Maintenance Plan (construction documents phase); HWA Wei Lee Library Annex Humidity Control FY2015 (design development phase); PSAC Site Improvement (design, construction documents and bid documents phases); Stocker Center AHU Replacement Study (conceptual design phase); and Van Vorhees Drive Improvements and University Terrace Repairs (design through bidding phases).

A resolution to proceed with construction for Central Classroom Anatomy Lab; College Green Upgrade; College of Business/Computer Services Center Renovation Phase I; Convocation Center Residential Renovations; Crawford Hall Bathroom Renovation; Dublin Integrated Education Center Parking Accommodation; MacKinnon Hall Electrical and Fire Alarm System Upgrades; McCracken Hall Renovation; Residential Housing Access Control Phases II and III; and South Green Comprehensive Site Design – Sweep Design Phase A.   

A resolution to donate approximately 3.045 acres and to grant permanent easements totaling 0.682 acres to the City of Dublin in order to facilitate the construction and on-going maintenance of a public roadway that will provide an alternate point of entry to the Dublin Campus that is more convenient to the Integrated Education Center.

A resolution to approve revisions to the Student Code of Conduct.

A resolution to approve offering the Bachelor of Science in Communication – Applied Communication in the Scripps College of Communication.

A resolution to approve offering the Bachelor of Science in Translational Health – Applied Health by the School of Applied Health Sciences through the Honors Tutorial College.

A resolution to approve offering the Bachelor of Art in Globalization and Development by the Department of Geography in the College of Arts and Sciences.

A resolution to approve the naming of the Veterans and Military Services Center to the Brigadier General James M. Abraham-Colonel Arlene F. Greenfield Veterans and Military Student Services Center.

A resolution to change the name of the Bachelor of Science in Sport Management to the Bachelor of Sport Management.

A resolution to accept the program review for the Industrial Maintenance Technology (IMT), Associate of Applied Science at the Lancaster Campus.