What more cuts could mean to U of Minnesota tuition

Before University of Minnesota President Bob Bruininks made his remarks to the state House higher education committee on the impact of deep cuts to higher ed, the U's CFO, Richrd Pfutzenreuter, gave a couple of quick scenarios:

The crux?

Tuition could go up by 6 percent if the state ends up cutting U funding by 15 percent, and could rise 7.5 percent If the state cuts as much as 20 percent of its funding.

In both cases, the U would first cut $51.1 million by offering no new financial aid, hiring no new faculty, instituting a salary freeze and making no inflation adjustments.

To cover the rest, it would take a "2/3rds - 1/3rd" approach by having the U absorb two-thirds of the hit and having students take the other third in the form of a tuition hike.

In the 15 percent scenario, the U would cut 5.5 percent of its budget, and tuition would increase 6 percent. In the 20 percent scenario, the U would cut 6.8 percent of its budget, and tuition would increase 7.5 percent.

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Yet Bruininks told the committee:

If it’s a 15-20 percent reduction, I’d be derelict in my duty not to recommend a double-digint tuition increase.

Lots of charts and graphs here, and I'm still trying to work out some of its math. It's a bit fuzzy, but I think it's a matter of how you slice and dice the various ways the U would cover the funding.

Anyone hear/interpret anything that's different?

On another note -- and another way to look at cost-of-education increases -- Pfutzenreuter said that after you factor in the average amount of financial aid that students get, the net price that students paid for going to the U increased increased only 20 percent from 2002 to 2009.

Meanwhile, in the past five years or so, the number of annual enrollmentapplications has more than doubled to 40,000. The U accepts about 8,500 students.

Some schools have very little state money left… and will have to become more financially self-supportive. That’s a trend, depending on the level of cuts, that will accelerate.