Students attending Rogers State University and Cameron University will pay more for their college education when classes begin this fall.

The University of Oklahoma Board of Regents voted Monday to increase tuition and fees at both universities to offset increasing costs for employee benefits, utilities and gas.

School officials in Claremore said declining financial support from the Oklahoma Legislature is also a factor in their request for higher rates.

RSU tuition will increase by slightly more than $8 per credit hour, raising the per credit hour charge to $90.95, an increase of 9.9 percent over last year’s rate of $82.75 per credit hour. Total tuition and fees will be $141.55 per credit hour or $4,246 for 30 credit hours.

To help students and parents cover the cost, RSU plans to boost to its scholarship budget by 16 percent over last year, said Dr. Larry Rice, RSU president designate.

“We realize that students and parents are paying higher prices for fuel and food,” Rice said. “As a result, the university is committed to doing everything it can to help them offset the rising cost of a college education.”

In addition, the university is increasing the amount of money available to employ students on campus.

Nationwide, students and their parents are paying a higher percentage of the cost of a college education as state legislatures are decreasing the support they provide to public colleges and universities.

RSU was allocated $14,860,639 for fiscal year 2008-2009 by the Oklahoma Legislature, $178,902 less than last year, Rice said. At the same time, the university will be paying a higher price for goods and services.

“Although the cost of a college education at RSU is increasing, it is still a good value and less expensive than comparable institutions,” Rice said.

Tuition rates are lower at RSU than the state’s two comprehensive universities — the University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University. In addition, Oklahoma law states that tuition at regional universities, including RSU, may not exceed the average of peer institutions in neighboring states.

In addition, the technology fee at RSU will increase by $4.60 per credit hour, from $7 to $11.60, the only increase in fees this fall.

Enrollment is currently underway for the fall semester.

Cameron University, located in Lawton, students will see a 9.4 percent increase in tuition with in-state undergraduates paying $137 per credit hour for tuition and fees.

Contributing source: The Associated Press

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