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Undergraduate students from outside North Carolina will pay $684 more in tuition next year. For a fifth straight year, in-state students will see no increase.
The 2021-22 tuition and fees schedules approved by the UNC System Board of Governors Thursday include a $40 increase in fees for all Chapel Hill students — $10 in the health services fee and $30 for campus security. The latter figure is consistent across the system due to reports that campus police departments are having trouble hiring the people they need.
Out-of-state graduate students will pay $566 more in tuition.
All the tuition numbers followed the recommendations from the Chapel Hill campus. The UNC Board of Trustees heard in November that the increases would generate $3.3 million in additional revenue.
In-state undergraduates will pay $9,027 in tuition and fees annually; those from out of state, $36,900.
The Board of Governors had decided that no fees other than health services could be raised. But a discussion in January about the difficulty schools were having paying competitive salaries to police officers in a time in which they may face increased possibilities of physical conflict and additional pressures imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic prompted a doubling of the security fee to $60 systemwide.
Steven Long ’82 voted against the increase, saying it “walls off” one fee for the needs of special interests. Long said the security costs should be addressed as a budget item and not subject to a fee. Three other board members agreed with Long but said they would vote to approve the fee because of the exigency of the need for more resources to recruit, retain and train police officers.
The trustees were briefed last fall about the extent to which UNC’s tuition and fees compare with the universities of Wisconsin, Maryland, Texas, Washington, California-Berkeley, Minnesota, Michigan, Virginia and Pittsburgh and with UCLA. Those schools’ in-state undergraduates paid an average of $14,155 at the time of the analysis; nonresidents at those schools paid an average of $41,327.
UNC’s analysis also showed that Chapel Hill students paid the lowest fees in the UNC System — $1,547 against an average of $2,191. N.C. State was closest to Carolina at $1,789.
Under a law enacted by the N.C. General Assembly in 2016, incoming first-year students are protected against tuition increases for four years. For instance, in-state undergraduates who enrolled in fall 2016 now pay $69 less than those who started four years later.
The provision covers North Carolina residents only; it does not affect out-of-state students or graduate and professional students. The law was intended in part as an incentive to complete college in four years. Those who take longer than four years without extenuating circumstances face financial penalties.