SIU raises, uncaps tuition

The cost of getting a college education is once again on the rise.

Southern Illinois University’s Board of Education voted to raise tuition 3%, or roughly $264.

That works out to $9,099 a semester for tuition alone.

The hike comes after the school had announced they may have to cut more than 400 classes due to the Illinois budget impasse.

This has some parents concerned they may not be getting the best bang for their buck.

As she nears her high school graduation Christal Gale says there’s only one college for her.

"My heart is set here at SIU,” said Gale.

However the day before Gale came for her first campus tour the Board of Trustees raised and uncapped tuition.

Now Gale’s mother, Felicia Williams, is questioning whether she can still afford to send her daughter to SIU.

"You try and budget and initially they said it was set at one rate,” said Williams.  “With it not being set at one rate how do you figure out your budget after that."

SIU spokeswoman Rae Goldsmith says budget issues at the state level forced the board into making the unpopular decision, but she’s confident it won’t hurt enrollment.

"When we looked at what our peer institutions were doing, including our sister institution in Edwardsville, many of them were uncapping tuition so that students were actually paying the full price for the credit hours they take,” said Goldsmith.

"It concerns me deeply,” said Williams.  “I have other children who are going to college, and that are in college, so pricing concerns me a big deal."

While Goldsmith admits capping tuition helped attract students in the past, she doesn’t see the cap coming back anytime soon.

The tuition increase will be in effect for students starting school in the fall semester.

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