IWU’s increased tuition raises concern among students

By Farah Bassyouni Mar 3, 2023

Credit: Argus Staff

On Thursday, Feb. 23, IWU students and parents received an email from the university with information on a tuition increase for the 2023-2024 academic year. 

“The goal is to maintain an exceptional quality of education, while keeping careful watch on costs. As you might imagine, over the past few years these decisions have become increasingly difficult,” the email said.

Due to pressures from inflation, such as food costs’ increase by 8 percent, the Board of Trustees approved a comprehensive fee increase of 3.6 percent for tuition, room, board and fees. 

For students who are paying for university tuition on their own or through loans and scholarships, this increase may negatively impact their financial situation. Especially for students who are not Illinois residents, like sophomore Kat Murray-Todd, there is a question of whether it’s the right thing to transfer to an in-state university instead. 

“I decided to come to IWU because I loved the campus and the atmosphere but now it just feels like I am here to give them money,” Murray-Todd said. “It’s going to be difficult for a lot of students to stay.”

The email highlighted that investments made by families to support a student’s education are also supported by alumni and friends of the university. A majority of IWU students do not pay full tuition and qualify for financial aid. On average, over half of the true cost of an Illinois Wesleyan education comes from sources other than student and family contribution. 

Another concern students have is their ability to graduate from their desired degrees. Murray-todd is a psychology major, and is worried about the future of her classes. 

“I know they want to keep as many departments open and still be able to grow,” Murray-Todd said. “But knowing that departments are being cut left and right makes the decision to stay very difficult.”

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