University tuition increases: 'A necessary evil'

University tuition increases: 'A necessary evil'

CORVALLIS, Ore. -- A recession riddle: what do you get when you take mroe students at Oregon universities and subtract state funding? Higher tuition and fees.

"It puts a lot of people in a tough position, I think," said Oregon State University junior Lacy Weinblatt. She's paying her own way through OSU. She said she receives a little financial aid, but the burden is mostly on her to foot the bill.

"I've already had to take out a few loans, so I'm going to have debt coming out of school. So to have to think about taking more loans is really stressful, especially in this economy," said Weinblatt.

The state Board of Higher Education approved tuition and fee increases at all state universities Friday. Next fall, Oregon State University in-state students will pay about $1,800 more per year.

"It is unfortunate that, I think for all concerned, that the students have to step up and pay a higher share of that," said OSU Spokesperson Todd Simmons.

"We wish that we could keep that from them, but financial realities are financial realities," he said.

The tuition increase is even larger at the University of Oregon; next year, in-state students will pay 9 percent more than what they're already paying now. Out-of-state students will pay more, too: about an extra $1,900 at UO.

"It's a necessary evil," said UO sophomore Jack Wray.

"It's going to hurt a lot, especially me, because I don't have a lot of scholarships, and my parents don't have much money right now," he said.

Di Saunders, spokesperson for the Oregon University System, said the increases are a product of more students and less state money.

"We don't want to cheat those students of a quality of education, so they leave the institution and say 'what did I pay for?'" she said.

"They're paying a lot of money, they deserve a high quality of education will help them to achieve their career and other types of goals when they get out of college," said Saunders.

For now, Weinblatt has a plan for making her tuition payments next year.

"I guess I'll just have to work my butt off as much as I can."

Tuition and Fees Increase Breakdown

OSU

2011-12 Tuition and Fees: $7,744
2010-11 Tuition and Fees: $7,115
% Increase: 8.8%

UO

2011-12 Tuition and Fees: $8,789
2010-11 Tuition and Fees: $8,190
% Increase: 7.3%

System Average

2011-12 Tuition and Fees: $7,623
2010-11 Tuition and Fees: $7,111
% Increase: 7.2%