UConn hasn’t had a great run in the news lately. Between Mac N Cheese kid and the guy who called in a hoax threat to get out of class they haven’t been generating much positive press. And their latest move isn’t going to do much to change that.
UConn’s Board of Trustees voted to raise tuition 31% over the next four years. The increase will be incremental with 2016 rising by 7%. That tuition cost does not include the $2,842 university fee all students must pay or $12k for room and board.
Mind you, President Susan Herbst’s contract was extended last year through 2019 and she was awarded an 11.4% pay raise. She also got a $40k yearly “performance award,” a $125k “retention incentive” along with a $75k retention incentive. All said her salary for this year was over $750k for 2015. Nice work Susan.
The only two trustees to vote against the increase were current students.
I decided to skim the comments of a few articles on the subject to see who was arguing what and surprisingly most people were saying UConn is a mess. There were complaints of crumbling infrastructure, an abundance of upper level admins and an overall disdain for Susan.
I do not/did not/will not attend UConn. I have no dog in this fight. But as an outsider looking in this hike and the logic behind it are baffling. If you have a budget deficit charging students more to attend isn’t a magic potion that will fix everything. You have to look to make cuts. Start with Susan’s insane salary. Maybe get rid of that 6-6 football team that probably costs more to operate than it brings in.
College is the new housing bubble. The government and banks will lend any amount of money to anyone who wants to attend and the schools keep raising prices to keep that money rolling in. Meanwhile, their degrees are less valuable and the campuses are less arenas of education and more theme parks.
This move by UConn is just one more step towards the eventual bursting of that bubble.