The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Regents eye tuition increase

COUNCIL BLUFFS — UI students may face steeper tuition increases next year because of the ongoing financial struggles of Iowa’s universities, one member of the state Board of Regents said on Thursday.

Tuition fees will rise at least 2.7 percent — the midpoint of the Higher Education Price Index — during the 2010-11 school year. But Regent Craig Lang said the number probably needs to be closer to 5 or 6 percent to help make up for the lack of state funding.

Lang suggested the hike during discussion about the $767.6 million state appropriation request for fiscal 2011 at Thursday’s regents’ meeting in Council Bluffs. The regents unanimously approved the request, which assumes the baseline increase of 2.7 percent for the UI, Iowa State University, and the University of Northern Iowa.

The regents did not hold a formal discussion on tuition proposals Thursday — those will come in October — and they will not see a final plan for the increase in tuition until their December meeting.

Last year, the regents increased tuition by 4.2 percent for in-state students.

Some UI students who heard the news said it’s always disheartening to learn about the increases every year.

UI sophomore Joe Fleming said his parents likely won’t be too happy with the rising tuition. But the Chicago native said it won’t keep him from returning to the UI.

Michelle Terwilliger, a junior pharmacy major from Humboldt, Iowa, said she’ll probably have to borrow more loan money to pay a higher tuition.

“Pharmacy school is pretty expensive as it is, so I won’t be a happy camper,” she said. She has some financial help from her parents, she said, but she gets the rest of tuition money from loans.

The tuition increase was just one topic regents discussed at their meeting.

UI President Sally Mason also informed the regents of the school’s new policies regarding sexual misconduct.

First-year UI students will now be required to complete an online course addressing sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking. The course must be completed before the start of a student’s second semester.

The course is a result of UI officials’ convergence with the law firm Schuster & Clifford to upgrade the university’s sexual misconduct policy.

As of Thursday, 3,659 students had completed the training.

New training is not just relegated to UI students. So far, 97 percent of the faculty, staff and teaching assistants have completed new training that involves mandatory web-based learning or an instructor-led program. The program covers harassment, misconduct, and policy-reporting protocols.

Regent President David Miles approved of the policy upgrades.

“This is tremendously important work,” he said.

DI reporter Regina Zilbermints contributed to this report.

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