By Lori Dresner, Managing Editor/News Editor
All Illinois students who attend the University of Missouri–St. Louis will soon receive the same in-state tuition rates as Missouri residents. The Board of Curators approved the new rate on Thursday.
Chancellor Thomas George is hoping that the expansion will bring up to 100 more students to UMSL during the first year the new rate is implemented, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
The aim of expanding the in-state tuition rate to Illinois residents is to increase declining enrollment rates at UMSL, according to St. Louis Public Radio. UMSL saw a 14.2 percent decrease in freshmen enrollment, and a 6.6 percent drop in total undergraduate enrollment from the fall 2015 to fall 2016 semesters.
Students in 22 Illinois counties have already received in-state tuition rates at the university since 2012. The rate change brought 140 additional Illinois students to UMSL.
The in-state tuition rate at UMSL is $5,032.50 for an average course load per semester. Out-of-state tuition is $13,138.50.
The decision to expand the tuition rate comes in the midst of the university considering a tuition increase for the 2018-19 academic year. It also comes just weeks after Governor Eric Greitens cut around $9 million in state funding to UMSL. According to STL Public Radio, the university had been close to closing its $15 million budget deficit prior to the cut.