Wittenberg has decided, for the second year in a row, to implement a freeze on its tuition and fees. This freeze will be in effect for the 2014-2015 academic year.
A tuition freeze means that “the tuition level that’s charged will be the same,” according to Randy Green, the executive director of financial aid. Director of Admissions, Karen Hunt, calls it, “our sticker price.”
Every year the Board of Directors reevaluates this amount. For next year, the amount for tuition will be the same as it was in 2012, around $37,230.
Raising tuition could be counter intuitive. “It really is an attempt to keep Witt as affordable as possible,” said Provost Chris Duncan. “If we start to raise tuition, people will turn away. We would hate to raise tuition and have kids not come to Witt because of the price.”
In 2012, Wittenberg decided to freeze tuition for the 2013-2014 academic year. Last year’s freeze included tuition and fees, as wellas room and board. The board determined that tuition will be set at the same amount next year. However, this freeze will only be including tuition and fees.
Hunt explained that there will be a two percent increase in room and board. The reason being, “as cost for food and energy go up, those things need to be covered.”
Hunt said the tuition freeze “shows the commitment on the part of Wittenberg to contain our cost” and to “do what we can to help families afford a Wittenberg education.”
The impact that the economy is having on higher education is everywhere. It’s not just Wittenberg. “The way most schools handle a price freeze is they freeze their price and then they reduce their financial aid,” said Green. “One of the things that we’re doing that’s different from that, is that’s not part of our plan.” Wittenberg will not be lowering its financial aid.
Green also went on to explain that just because Wittenberg has decided to freeze tuition, does not mean that everyone will be paying the same price. The total cost for tuition will remain the same and the amount in scholarships a student receives from Wittenberg will remain the same, but grants may change based on family income. Every year a family must fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). If the FAFSA results are the same, then the amount paid will stay the same.
The idea is that if the family makes more, then they should be able to pay more. “The students paying more are paying more because their ability to pay went up,” said Green.
“Most financial aid officers around the country generally are arguing for small or no increases,” said Green. The economy is not rebounding, and Green said that most families he’s talked to are very appreciative for Wittenberg’s tuition freeze.