2004-2005 budget calls for tuition, aid increases
Students can expect a five percent increase in tuition next school year if the trustees approve the proposed budget.
The official vote will not be until May, but according to Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration S. Catherine Longley, the increase will probably be in the five percent range.
Longley said that some decisions have already been made based on the anticipated five percent increase. The financial aid office will likely have a budget increase of seven percent, from $14.6 million to $15.7 million.
"We're doing this to meet the need-blind admissions policy," said Longley.
Longley said that while Bowdoin's tuitions hikes are on par with other institutions, the increase will likely meet some criticism. "There's a lot of public scrutiny about this," she said. "Tuition increases are currently subject to public and Congressional scrutiny."
The College will need to be sensitive to these discussions, but at the same time be prepared to communicate that the price a student pays to attend Bowdoin is far lower than the actual cost of providing that education.
The College intends to continue to be need blind and meet the financial need of every student."
The average grant students at Bowdoin receive is $23,000, and this year, 41 percent of students are on financial aid.
Longley stated that in recent years, the percentage of students receiving financial aid has gone up, but that they are predicting that next year, the same percentage of students will need financial aid.
In addition to financial aid increases, other budget adjustments include a pay increase for the staff and faculty.
According to Longley, this is the first time in two years that the staff will be receiving an increase in pay. Longley noted the importance of looking at faculty pay at Bowdoin compared to the salary of faculty members at other colleges in competition with Bowdoin.
"The amount budgeted for next year should maintain or improve the College's current competitive position in relation to its goal of compensating faculty at the level of the average of the fourth, fifth, and sixth highest-paying colleges within its 18-college comparison group," she said.
Major maintenance costs have gone up six percent this year, and the proposed budget will reflect this. Additionally, the new budget will include pay for three new positions including another security patrol support, someone to help with the One Card program, and someone to fill a reinstated multi-cultural position on campus.
While no official discussions have taken place at the administrative level concerning the long-term plans for tuition management, Longley said that many in the community are becoming increasingly sensitive as to how much the increases can be and as well as how long they can continue.
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