The University of Louisville will consider raising tuition 4 percent for the coming school year, President Neeli Bendapudi told staff and faculty Friday.
UofL’s board of trustees will vote on the increase as part of the full budget on June 20. Last month, Bendapudi and board chairman David Grissom said they were in favor of raising tuition to make up for a 6.25 percent cut in state funding.
“I’m writing today to share some bad, but necessary, news about our budget,” Bendapudi wrote in an email to faculty and staff, that was shared with Insider.
A tuition increase would generate around $7.7 million in new revenue for the university, Grissom said in May. For in-state students, a 4 percent increase means paying around an extra $220 a semester. For out-of-state students, that jumps to around $520.
The proposed budget includes a 5 percent funding cut across the university, she said. However, UofL knows they “simply cannot cut our way to success,” Bendapudi said.
“Deans, vice presidents and other administrators will determine how their individual units will deal with the cut,” Bendapudi said. “I am sure this news does not come as a shock to many of you, but certainly a disappointment to all of us. I am sorry that my first message to each of you has to be this one.”
Bendapudi said spending changes over the past year, state appropriation changes and a need to increase emergency cash on hand all contributed to ongoing budget issues.
“We must deal with these realities immediately,” Bendapudi said.
The budget must first pass through the board’s finance committee. In May, the committee discussed the budget — which contained the increase — but did not vote on it.
The likely increase comes a year after UofL voted to freeze tuition for the first time in several years. Kentucky schools can raise tuition a total of 6 percent across two years, with a maximum 4 percent increase allowed in one year. Bendapudi said they hope to keep tuition increases “low” in the future.
“I want to acknowledge the gravity of this situation, but remind you that we are turning a corner and that together we will steer the university back to a strong financial position,” Bendapudi said.