Board of Trustees approved to increase tuition and financial aid


Courtesy / MiBiz

Mary Racette, Associate Editor

Students will see the smallest increase in tuition since 2004 for the 2021-22 academic year. The Grand Valley State University Board of Trustees voted to increase tuition by 2.4% on June 25. 

Vice President for University Relations Matthew McLogan explained the factors which contributed to this decision. 

The board knows that the tuition and the financial aid decision within the budget are the most important to students and the most important part of the budget,” McLogan said. “The reason it is so carefully treated by the board is because it is a commitment that we make to the students, faculty, staff and the communities that host our campuses that Grand Valley is going to remain stable and our quality will remain high.”

The university has two revenue lines: state appropriation and tuition. In the past thirty years, state appropriation has become a much smaller part of the university’s revenue stream. The state appropriation is still unknown by the university for the coming fiscal year, so the board acted on the best information available on the day of the decision. 

About 30 years ago, two-thirds of GVSU’s revenue came from the state and about one-third came from tuition. Now, McLogan said this ratio has more than flipped. Currently, 84% of the university’s revenue is made up of tuition and 16% is state appropriation. 

While they have had to increase tuition, the board has worked hard to keep the increase as low as possible. McLogan said it is a goal to keep GVSU accessible and affordable for students. 

The Board of Trustees also approved a $5.4 million increase in financial aid at the meeting on June 25. This brings the total amount of institutional financial aid to $70.1 million.

“We have been extremely careful in how the university spends the resources we have been given,” McLogan said. “We want to make sure that we are responsible and responsive in the revenue that we receive and how it is used.”

Compared to other Michigan public universities, GVSU ranks tenth in tuition costs and twelfth once the cost of housing is considered. 

Our operating costs are lower than most universities and that is a deliberate management objective on our part to make certain that we are as careful as we can be with the resources that we have been given, ” McLogan said.