STORRS—The University of Connecticut’s board of trustees postponed plans to discuss whether to increase tuition on Tuesday at the urging of Gov. M. Jodi Rell.
Rell had issued a press release telling university officials that now is the worst time to increase costs for students.
“Many students are already working multiple jobs to pay tuition,” Rell said in the release. “It is simply premature at best to take any action on—or even to talk about—a possible increase in tuition or fees for the next academic year.”
John W. Rowe, chairman of the trustees, agreed with Rell.
“There are a number of reasons why it’s premature to make decisions at this point—one of these reasons being the federal stimulus package,” Rowe said Tuesday during the board’s meeting in Storrs.
According to Rowe, the trustees will be busy clarifying the tuition issue over the next month.
The board will meet again March 10 and must make a decision on tuition by March 15. Rowe said that Rell noted that the economy is in a recession and that any increase in tuition may be burdensome for students with financial needs.
“We strongly concur with Rell’s statements,” Rowe said. “It is important that trustees and the university keep this in mind. We need a budget that recognizes students with vulnerabilities.”
UConn President Michael Hogan said he was grateful that the university faces a 5 percent funding cut, rather than 10 percent. He said the university will fill the gap by eliminating services while at the same time seeking to protect quality programs.
“We’re going to look for every cost saving,” Hogan said.