UC Regents approve Tuition Stability Plan to increase predictability, financial aid and academic resources; tuition for current undergraduates to remain flat

The University of California Board of Regents approved today (July 22) the Tuition Stability Plan to increase predictability for students and families, better support students with the greatest financial need and provide critical resources for UC campuses.

The Plan will begin fall 2022 and will not impact current UC undergraduates or incoming 2021-2022 undergraduates.

The new model will adjust University-wide tuition and fees for each incoming undergraduate class, both freshmen and transfer students, but those annual charges will be held flat throughout their attendance at UC. Undergraduates can expect their tuition and fee costs to remain the same from their time of enrollment until they graduate, for up to six years to allow for flexibility and unforeseen circumstances.

The tuition change will apply to California and out-of-state undergraduates based on the fee schedule below, which is tied to inflation plus 2 percent for fall 2022 freshmen and transfers that tapers to just inflation for fall 2026 freshmen and transfers.

Tuition change fee schedule
Year Undergraduates First Enroll at UC Increase Over Amount Charged to Students Who Entered in Prior Year
2021-22 and earlier No increase
2022-23 Inflation + 2.0%
2023-24 Inflation + 1.5%
2024-25 Inflation + 1.0%
2025-26 Inflation + 0.5%
2026-27 and later Inflation

Incoming 2022 freshmen and transfer students will pay about 4.2 percent (or $534) more in tuition and fees than current students. The Plan pins inflation to a three-year rolling average of the California Consumer Price Index, and overall increases (a portion of which is inflation) under the proposal will be capped at 5 percent unless changed by the Board of Regents. The Plan will be up for reauthorization by the Board in July 2026. Any changes would be expected to apply to the subsequent academic year, 2027-28.

Under the Plan, new and continuing graduate students will have their University-wide tuition and fees held essentially flat in constant dollars, rising only by inflation beginning fall 2022. New funding will support fellowships, assistantships and grants, allowing UC to continue competing with top public and private graduate schools worldwide. 

Though perhaps counterintuitive, this long-term plan will boost the financial aid available to students with the greatest need, thanks to the University’s longstanding commitment to affordability. For California undergraduates, UC will direct 45 percent of all new base tuition revenues toward lower- and middle-income California undergraduates, an increase from the current 33 percent. This support, coupled with the state’s Cal Grant program, will not only cover the tuition increase for more than 106,000 in-state students, but also provide additional aid to help them cover basics such as food, housing and books. Even families earning $90,000 to $120,000 would typically benefit from the higher financial aid generated from the Tuition Stability Plan. For students in graduate professional degree programs, the amount of new base tuition directed to financial aid will increase to 40 percent from the current 33 percent.

The University’s long-term approach will also provide students and families much-needed predictability, enable their multiyear planning of finances, and eliminate worries about unexpected tuition shifts based on unforeseen, but inevitable downturns in the state’s economy.

Meanwhile, campuses will be able to more effectively serve students through reliable revenue streams and predictable resources as the University maintains its academic excellence and world-class educational experience. The Tuition Stability Plan will also allow campuses to reduce class sizes, boost student instruction, enhance student services and address a backlog of deferred building maintenance, among other needs. New tuition revenues will also support UC’s efforts to improve graduation rates, reduce achievement gaps, and attract and retain top-tier faculty.

This is only the second time UC has increased in-state tuition in 10 years; the last increase was in 2017 by 2.5 percent (or $282). Since fall 2015, the University has added more than 19,000 additional California undergraduates while coping with fluctuations in the economy and in state investment as well as cost increases and inflation. In fact, in the past two decades UC core funds, which include state contributions, tuition and student fees, have increased by only 9 percent while enrollment has grown by 71 percent. That has resulted in a 36 percent drop in funding per student.

To view the Board’s discussion and vote, visit here. Answers to frequently asked questions may be found here. As with all UC policies, the UC Regents reserve the authority to make changes as necessary to respond to changing conditions.

This article originally appeared on the University of California Office of the President website. Click here to view the original article. 

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