UC approves 8-percent fee hike for fall 2011

WESTWOOD, Calif. The /*University of California*/ Board of Regents approved the increase Thursday morning. Students from California will have to pay $822 more starting next year. The fee hike will raise $180 million a year and about half of that will be set aside for financial aid.

Some students said they're concerned that the increase will put a bigger burden on their parents.

"It kind of makes me worry about them and what they're having to go through, because I know it's already a struggle. If they're adding money little by little, at first, it might not seem like a big deal, but you know it's only going to get worse," said UCLA student Naomi Tamrata.

"I don't have a job. I'm depending on my parents, so it's really difficult for them to expect us to pay all this," said UCLA student Haia Chakoukani. "It makes me nervous as a student."

On Wednesday, about 300 protesters were outside of a UC building in San Francisco where the UC Board of Regents was holding a meeting.

Ten students were arrested and four officers were injured. The regents are expected to approve an 8 percent tuition increase to offset state budget cuts.

Students who tried to enter the meeting crossed a barricade and were pepper-sprayed by police.

"I understand that there's real passion and emotion, but all we can hope for is that, you know, everybody behaves," said UC spokesperson Lynn Tierney.

UC officials said that the tuition hike is needed to maintain student enrollment, courses and services. Cuts in state funding have led to faculty furloughs and course cutbacks at the 10-campus university system.

A new survey by the /*Public Policy Institute of California*/ shows:

  • 74 percent of residents say the state does not provide enough money for colleges and universities
  • 57 percent of parents with children 18 or younger worry about being able to afford college
  • 49 percent of respondents said they would pay higher taxes to maintain current funding
  • 35 percent of residents favor raising their own taxes rather than raising student fees

Next year, /*California State University*/ students will pay a 5-percent tuition hike for the winter and spring semesters and a 10 percent hike in the fall. The CSU Board of Trustees said the increase is a result of the state budget crisis.

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