Undergraduate tuition will increase by roughly $1,400 for the 2018-19 school year with additional increases to costs for room and board, according to a letter sent to students’ home addresses from President Dr. Robert Fisher.
Provost Dr. Thomas Burns commented on those increases during Monday’s bi-weekly SGA meeting.
“That’s the lowest percentage increase we’ve had since I’ve been here,” Burns said.
The increase in tuition — 4.55 percent — is just .03 percent lower than last year’s increase.
Room and board costs are also set to rise by 3 percent, with the undergraduate student fee increasing by $35, according to Fisher’s letter.
“As we strive to create high quality programs and facilities for students, our faculty, staff and administration are also working across the board to tightly control expenses to help keep your costs low,” the letter stated.
“In fact, the total price of attendance at Belmont remains near the lowest when compared with our peer institutions, and the coming year’s tuition continues our trend of keeping the percentage increase lower than the year before.”
Tuition increases help offset rising costs of water, gas and electricity, as well as the cost of hiring new faculty, Burns said at the SGA meeting.
“When I started at Belmont we had around 250 regular full-time permanent faculty, we have over 400 now,” Burns said. “So adding new faculty lines, which also keeps our student to faculty ratio, often means we have to increase tuition and fees.”
In spite of the increases, most students should be relatively unaffected — Burns confirmed financial aid will increase relative to the rising cost of attendance.
Contributing reporting from Caroline Cathey.