Starting in the fall 2023 semester, the cost of attendance for Missouri State University’s Springfield and West Plains campuses will increase.

In the Board of Governors Executive Committee meeting on Wednesday, April 19, President Clif Smart and Chief Financial Officer Stephen Foucart presented the Springfield campus 2023-2024 fee schedule to the board.

As current MSU students start registering for next semester's classes and high school seniors are making their college decisions, Smart said that it was important to discuss the fee schedule with the Executive Committee.

According to Smart, the proposed cost increase to attend will go up by $444 per school year for the typical undergraduate Missouri-resident student taking 30 credit hours each year. The change is an overall increase of 4.9% for tuition and fees, while inflation last year was 6.5%.

“We’re under inflation significantly for the second year in a row, as we work to maintain our advantage in affordability compared to the University of Missouri schools and the other big schools in Kansas, Arkansas and Illinois that surround us,” Smart said.

The price increase will vary based on Missouri residency, undergraduate or graduate status and enrollment in internet-based or regular instruction. The majority of MSU students are regular instruction undergraduate Missouri residents. Next school year, their tuition bill will reflect an increase of $12 per credit hour. Regular instruction undergraduate non-Missouri residents will have a $25 increase per credit hour.

For those living in on-campus housing next school year, the residence hall housing fees will be increasing. According to the meeting agenda, “The combined room and board blended increase on all residence halls will not exceed 6%.” University housing rates for the 2023-2024 academic year have not yet been posted.

Student service fees and other enrollment fees will also increase. For students taking more than seven credit hours per semester, there will be a $42 increase in required student service fees. Other enrollment fees consist of additional charges for specific departmental courses and will increase variably.

Student service fees are based on how many credits a student is enrolled in. These fees are utilized for a variety of services, including the Student Government Association, a sustainability fee, a mental health fee and the Bill R. Foster and Family Recreation Center. 

Membership rates for the Bill R. Foster and Family Recreation Center will also be increased. This affects MSU employees, active alumni and additional eligible members that utilize the recreation center.

University Safety parking permits will also increase in price starting in the fall. Green or red residence hall parking permits will cost $230, an increase of $12. Yellow or yellow and white commuter permits will cost $140, an increase of $7.

During the board meeting, Smart presented a comparison of MSU’s cost of attendance increases to the prices of other Missouri public higher education institutions.

“In terms of the regional schools in Missouri state, we’re all essentially moving up about the same amount, all working hard to maintain affordability for our students,” Smart said.

MSU was placed around the middle of this list, priced higher than Southeast Missouri State University and Truman State University but lower than University of Central Missouri and Northwest Missouri State University.

“We remain very competitive, frankly the best value on the board in my judgment,” Smart said.

Although all the pieces of the budget for the next academic year have yet to be finalized, Smart said the proposed budget will meet the needs of faculty and students.

“You’re always walking that line between maintaining affordability on one side and then delivering a quality product and retaining your employees and a good experience on the other side,” Smart said. “I think if we move forward with this, this sets us up to be able to produce a budget that will do both of those things.”

Dennis Lancaster, chancellor of the West Plains campus, then presented next year’s fee schedule for MSU’s West Plains campus to the board. For Missouri resident undergraduates enrolled in regular instruction, the tuition cost will increase by $8 per credit hour.

“If a student is taking a full load, 15 hours a semester, then they’re looking at $240 more this year than last year,” Lancaster said.

The common fee, similar to the student services fee for the Springfield campus, is based on how many credits a student is enrolled in and covers student and administrative activities. This fee will increase by $10 per credit hour.

Both the fee schedules for the Springfield campus and the West Plains campus were approved by the board.

The next Board of Governors Executive Committee meeting will occur on July 19 at 4 p.m. and will be available to watch on Zoom.

For more detailed information about the approved fee schedules, visit the committee meeting agenda.

Follow Jenna Murray on Twitter, @Jenna_Murray5

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