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Journey to my MBA

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Tuition Increases on the rise in Michigan. Other schools have gone up as well

This may not affect you directly as this Tuition article is about Michigan. However, this year Tuition at many Business Schools have gone up. It's hard to tell by just how much unless one sees articles like that actually track the trend. I've seen Tuition at most Universities going up this year. I noticed that Chicago GSB raised their Tuition this year by $1,900. Call it economic demand for higher education, inflation or whatever you like. School Tuitions are going up and it should be something that doesn't paralyze your decision making, but should be noted as an overall trend in our economy. I've seen people make some really stupid decisions because of Tuition costs.

I had one e-mail this year from someone who was accepted at a local state MBA School and Wharton. Wharton was 2-3 times the cost and so they elected not to go to Wharton. I beat this person up pretty bad in a reply e-mail that career opportunities, peer/alumni networking and quality of education were all superior at Wharton compared to the state school. The dollar signs in this persons head kept him from making a great decision.

I concluded that this guy didn't deserve to go to Wharton anyway and that the Wharton community was WAY better off not to have such a common sense idiot in their midst.

I absolutely emplore anyone who has the right amount of sense, leadership and a dream to change the world to a better place through business to see the opportunity versus the dollar limitation of the moment to seriously consider business school. Your future is far more important and getting into debt by going into a top school is absolutely worth it. Don't listen to your penny pinching friends or family. They clearly don't understand that the value of oppportunity trumps an empty pocket book at times like this.

If you think that I'm talking rubbish, then all I can say is that I feel really sad for you. What a shame.

U-M, EMU latest to hike tuition

Fee increases are down from '05, but still push affordability limits for thousands in state.

Marisa Schultz / The Detroit News

MSU approves 5.9 percent tuition hike
Colleges ease up on tuition increases

ANN ARBOR -- The University of Michigan and Eastern Michigan University on Friday became the latest public universities to increase tuition rates, a trend that has thousands of students making tough choices.

Krystal McKnight is a Michigan State University psychology student who graduated from Detroit's Cass Tech High School. Tim Korhumel is a University of Michigan engineering senior who grew up in Toledo.

They are strangers at rival schools. But the tuition increases passed this week have forced them into a common place: Both are considering the drastic step of dropping out of college until they can afford to come back.

"My parents tell me I should come home," said McKnight, an MSU junior, whose father recently retired but still has too much income for McKnight to get sufficient financial aid. "But I know people who take a semester off and … they don't come back.

"I want to come back in the fall. I have a lease anyway, but it's up in the air how I'm going to pay."

Students of all backgrounds are grappling with higher bills as the state's public universities raise tuition for the fall. Although the rate hikes are less than last year's increases that ranged from about 7 percent to 18 percent, the increases have brought some students to the breaking point.

Eastern Michigan approved a 6 percent increase in tuition and fees for resident undergraduate students, bringing the total first-year cost, including room and board, to more than $13,500 for a typical student.

U-M regents approved a 5.5 percent increase for undergraduate students in the College of Literature, Science and the Arts, its largest undergraduate school. That brings the total cost, including room and board, of a typical first-year student to more than $17,500. Tuition for other U-M schools will increase about 6.5 percent. Costs for engineering undergrads will go up 7 percent and for Ross School of Business juniors and seniors, they'll go up 9.3 percent.

The increases are on par with other state colleges, which have raised tuition this year from 4.9 percent to 8.75 percent. But they come at time when accessibility to education is extremely important as state leaders want to double the number of college graduates to help redefine Michigan's brawn-based economy.

Universities have been reeling from several years of state funding cuts. Meanwhile, campus expenses are growing. To keep universities viable, tuition has to go up, leaders say.

And it has. The average in-state tuition grew 80 percent in the last decade, according to Senate Fiscal Agency records. State appropriations to Michigan's 15 universities grew just 7 percent during that time.

University leaders received good news this year. State appropriations to public colleges are expected to improve under a budget deal hammered out between the governor and the Legislature June 30. Increases will range from 2.5 percent at Wayne State University to a high of 6 percent at Grand Valley State University.

Although U-M is expected to receive its first state funding increase since 2001, President Mary Sue Coleman said the anticipated 3 percent boost can't stave off another tuition hike. The $326 million in state funds represent just 24 percent of the university's budget, she said.

"We are playing catch-up to past cuts in state funding," Coleman said.

To lessen the burden on the neediest students, U-M regents also approved an increase in financial aid funds. U-M is committed to meeting the full financial need of all Michigan undergrads, Coleman said.

But that won't help Korhumel, whose family lives so close to the Michigan border he missed in-state tuition by just miles, he said.

Under the new tuition plan, he'll now pay the second highest undergraduate tuition at $32,888 as an out-of-state engineering senior. He'd pay $944 more if he studied kinesiology.

He's faced with a big decision: take out more loans or take a semester off to work full time and then graduate with less debt.

Even if he stays, Korhumel says the loans, parent support and summer income won't be enough.

"In previous semesters I had just enough money to get by," Korhumel said. "Now I would have to work part-time."

You can reach Marisa Schultz at (313) 222-2310 or


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