Missouri state budget cuts are catching up with higher education, as the University prepares for another increase in tuition for next fall. With the spring semester brings FAFSA applications, scholarship approvals and class enrollment. For the semester on the horizon, it seems the perfect time to discuss the impending increase of tuition.

The 10 percent decrease in state appropriations has left administrators to make tough decisions in money manners, and students and parents dread the monetary increase to an already above average cost for Missouri universities and colleges.

Though graduate students are off the hook, undergraduate Bearcats are looking to dig a little deeper into their pockets for the 2018-2019 academic year. Though the increase is an inconvenience, administors are doing their best to lighten the burden of missing funding.

With three sources of funding being tuition and fees, state appropriations and donors and benefactors, the level of balance has been thrown off-kilter by Missouri legislation. The cuts from the state has left Northwest $7.5 million in the hole, according to the chair of the Board of Regents Patrick Harr. Now may not have been the best time for housing upgrades, but these upgrades will be backed with the increase in room and board cost.

Affordability being the University’s main goal, the attempts to minimize the effects of the state funding cuts lends a reassuring hand to students. With the amount of resources and technology provided at Northwest, a 2.1 percent increase may be an unfortunate nuisance, the situation could certainly be worst.

Northwest’s maintenance of quality and efficiency is a main goal. As the state continues its slow yet steady withdrawal of funding, sacrifices need to be made to keep business flowing as normal.

The 2.1 percent increase to tuition would cost parents and students about $75 more per semester. The percentage of funding cuts are alarming at first glance, with panicked thoughts of more thousands of dollars of debt building up for undergraduate students. When placed in actual dollar amounts this increase becomes a little easier to stomach.

While the increase is not final and state funding may make a comeback in the near future, it may be time for students to prepare parents for a ‘I need more money’ discussion. Money matters may hinder some of us, but the goal is to continue our journey through education by any means. Scholarships and grants may provide students with more options in money matters.

It’s not a fun task to keep up with the tuition increases for students across the nation, but funding ourselves as individuals through scholarships and grants may be the best options for the growing dents in our pockets.

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