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Tuition flat for most UC students

Undergrad seniors, juniors, pre-juniors to see tuition held at Fall 2015 rates

Undergrad seniors, juniors, pre-juniors will see tuition held at Fall 2015 rates, while sophomores and UC's incoming class are guaranteed locked-in tuition throughout their college careers.

Today’s vote by the University of Cincinnati’s Board of Trustees promises to provide continued stability and predictability to UC students and their families around educational costs.

Six years of flat tuition

The Board today voted to once again freeze undergraduate tuition for current, degree-seeking undergraduates not covered by a formal Tuition Guarantee pledge.

What this means:

  • Returning students who will be undergraduate seniors, juniors and pre-juniors in Fall 2020 will see their tuition frozen for the sixth year in a row at the Fall 2015 rate.
  • So, for the upcoming Fall 2020, degree-seeking undergrads from Ohio attending UC’s Uptown Campus at the senior, junior or pre-junior level full time, tuition will remain flat at $11,000 annual in-state tuition.

When looked at through the lens of wider trends and comparisons, UC is a leader in demonstrating restraint and flexibility on holding down tuition growth over multiple years.  

Factors helping UC hold down costs for continuing students would include seven years of steadily rising, record enrollment and efficiencies, such as a comprehensive campaign to reduce costs for books. 

Tuition guarantees in place

Returning sophomores already have a Tuition Guarantee – provided when they entered last fall – that their tuition will remain locked in at their entry year rate. So, sophomores on the Uptown Campus (who entered as first-year, degree-seeking students in Fall 2019) will continue with the same annual in-state tuition of $11,660, frozen at that rate throughout their four- or five-year degree programs.

For the incoming undergraduate class of Fall 2020, the Tuition Guarantee continues, and at the June 23 Board of Trustees meeting, the class’ tuition was locked in for their four- or five-year degree programs at $12,138 annually. That’s a $478 annual increase (4.1 percent) over the prior year’s Tuition Guarantee to the Fall 2019 class. Just like last year, the new Fall 2020 guarantee applies to first-year, full-time, degree-seeking students, and this is the second entering class UC has welcomed under the Tuition Guarantee structure. ‘

At UC’s regional campuses, Blue Ash and Clermont, returning Ohio sophomores pursuing associate degrees full-time will have a Tuition Guarantee rate frozen at Fall 2019 levels -- $5,634 (Clermont) and $6,010 (Blue Ash). For the incoming class of approximately 2,000 who will pursue associate degrees full time, the in-state rate will be set and guaranteed at $5,864 (Clermont) and $6,256 (Blue Ash). That’s a $230 annual increase over the guaranteed rate provided to last year’s incoming students at Clermont, and a $246 annual increase over the guaranteed rate provided to last year’s incoming students at Blue Ash.

Tangeman University Center

Tangeman University Center / Photo by UC Creative Services

Student voices on tuition freeze

Undergraduate Student Body President Logan Lindsay said, “In the current climate where college affordability is at the forefront of students’ minds, I fully support President Pinto’s and the Board’s decision to freeze tuition for our returning undergraduate students. The pandemic altered the lives of students in a way that was unpredictable, and by keeping tuition frozen for returning undergraduate students, the university not only upholds its commitment to accessible and affordable higher education but also helps alleviate financial concerns that students might not have had before.  

He added, “While this decision will benefit undergraduate students for the upcoming year, the financial impact felt from COVID-19 will stick with students for many years, and I hope that these freezes will continue until all undergraduate students are covered by the Tuition Guarantee program.”

In a time of so much uncertainty and unrest, I am delighted to see the University of Cincinnati honor its commitment to students by again deciding to freeze tuition.

Karl Dierking, UC Student Government Vice President

UC Student Government Vice President Karl Dierking agreed, “In a time of so much uncertainty and unrest, I am delighted to see the University of Cincinnati honor its commitment to students by again deciding to freeze tuition.  While countless things are changing day in and day out for many of us, I hope that this decision provides a brief respite to members of the undergraduate community. 

And undergraduate student representative to the Board Abigail Klare spoke during the meeting, stating, “I would like to reiterate my support of the university’s commitment to the Tuition Guarantee program. Clarity and stability around the cost of education is increasingly valuable for students and their families, and I thank President Pinto, his team, and the Board for their commitment to this critical program.”

Graduate student tuition

For graduate students, Fall 2020 in-state tuition on the Uptown Campus was set at an annual rate of $14,902, an increase of $434 (3 percent) over last year. It's important to note that in certain programs, graduate student tuition may be covered by teaching or research stipends or scholarships. UC will be increasing the hourly rate for certain graduate student stipends by about 40 percent, beginning in the Fall 2020 school year. That means doctoral students with assistantships receiving a boost to their hourly rate will see their research or teaching stipends come to $21 an hour. The 7-percent pay increase for master's students with assistantships will mean an hourly teaching or research rate of about $16 per hour staring in Fall 2020.

Annual UC scholarships and co-op earnings for students add up to almost $160 million

Video link: https://www.youtube.com/embed/wfJpo2aGngo?rel=0

To help cover educational costs, students and their families can apply scholarships, grants, work study and other forms of financial aid along with any loans or earnings. The university provides more than $84 million annually to undergraduates in the form of institutional merit-, talent- and need-based aid and scholarships. When this institutional aid (provided directly from the university) is combined with federal, state and private support, UC administers close to $500 million in aid to its 46,388 students.

At UC, opportunities for students to earn while they learn – ‘hire learning’ as it’s sometimes called – are also integrated into their academic coursework thanks to the university’s nationally No. 3 ranked (No. 1 among public institutions) cooperative education program. In 2019-20, UC students earned a collective $75 million thanks to alternating academic semesters with professionally paid work semesters tied to their majors --   employed locally, regionally, across the nation and even internationally.

UC co-op student at work at 84.51, a subsidiary of The Kroger Co.

In 2019-20, UC students earned a collective $75 million working in co-op jobs around the world. Photo/Lisa Ventre, UC Creative Services

State/national trends and comparisons

UC is a leader in Ohio and nationally in demonstrating restraint and flexibility on holding down tuition growth.

According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Ohio leads the nation in holding down tuition costs, and UC is contributing to that effort.

Between 2008 and 2018, many states saw double- and even triple-figure increases in tuition costs. For example, Louisiana saw a more than 100 percent increase in average tuition at public, four-year colleges. In Kentucky, that figure stands at 38.8 percent, and in Indiana, 15.2 percent. Ohio has led the nation on holding down tuition costs, boasting the lowest average rate of tuition growth for public universities among all states. The inflation-adjusted tuition rates in Ohio have risen 5 percent.  

Graphic of percentage change in tuition

Ohio has led the nation on holding down tuition costs, boasting the lowest average rate of tuition growth for public universities among all states. Graphic/Inter-University Council of Ohio

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