The University System of Maryland Board of Regents voted unanimously May 5 to increase tuition and dormitory fees for the 2021-22 academic year, following a freeze on tuition and fees this past year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
On the Lower Shore, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore and Salisbury University will raise in-state tuition by up to 2%. That puts the in-state cost for a full-time student at UMES at $8,724 and $11,271 for those who live on Delmarva. Those out-of-state and off the Eastern Shore will be charged $19,343.
At SU, in-state tuition will rise 1.4% to $10,188 and 1.7% to $20,458 for out-of-state full-time students.
Elsewhere in the system there will be a 2% increase for students attending Bowie State, Coppin State, Frostburg, and the University of Maryland Baltimore County.
It will rise to the maximum of 5% for those attending Towson University, the University of Baltimore and the University of Maryland, College Park.
After freezing room and board rates this year, some USM campuses will also raise dormitory costs, including SU, which will increase it by 3.6%. UMES, however, decided its room and board costs will remain the same. Its dormitories on the Princess Anne campus open to freshmen for the fall semester on Aug. 26.
The university system has seen substantial financial losses during the pandemic, the result of additional costs for personal protective equipment, COVID-19 testing and other safety measures, as well as lower enrollment and fewer on-campus events to bring in revenue, Chancellor Jay A. Perman said during the board meeting.
The increase in revenue from higher tuition and mandatory fees — an estimated $37 million— will help fund technology upgrades, mental health services and scholarship funding. Without an increase, some campuses may have to cut course offerings, freeze hiring or cut faculty and staff, Dr. Perman said.
“This is a reasonable increase, keeping us competitive in our education product with our peer institutions,” Dr. Perman said. “Even with this increase, the system remains a very good value for the money. Our tuition prices, and soon debt levels, remain below national averages.”
Dr. Perman said the system has a budget gap of up to half-a-billion dollars and $450 billion in “one-time” federal funding is not enough. The increases in tuition and fees were decided in consultation with elected officials in the General Assembly and the governor’s office, Regents Chair Linda R. Gooden said.