Proposed tuition increase of 3.53 percent highlights Board of Trustees meeting

Jonathan Williams, Associate editor

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A tuition increase of 3.53 percent as well as on-going fundraising plans, college goals, enrollment updates, new science building plans and faculty promotions were discussed at the Board of Trustees meeting on the McMinnville campus this weekend.

Chief Financial Officer and Vice President for Finance and Administration Mary Ann Rodriguez presented the proposed budget increase to the board. The proposed increase would equate to an increase of $1,400 per academic year and would raise the total gross tuition from $39,700 to $41,100 if approved by the board. The board will vote to approve the budget at a later meeting.

The Online and Continuing Education tuition is proposed to increase by 3.13 percent, moving from $480 to $495 if approved.

The January Term per credit hour charge is also proposed to increase from $235 to $245.

ASLC Vice President Mikenna Whatley said that the Budget Working Group met all through January to discuss the budget. She also said that the increased tuition is on par with inflation. “The budget is tight and they are having to tap into some savings,” Whatley said.

Charging students who live on campus during the summer is also one way the college is working to increase revenue and balance the budget. Students who live on campus during the summer and are working 20 hours per week or are doing research will be charged a $500 housing fee starting this summer. Students who don’t meet that criteria will be charged $1,225 for the summer.

Whatley also said that Campaign Linfield and on-going fundraising efforts were topics discussed at the meeting. Illustrations of the new science building that is currently being fundraised for were also presented at the meeting. “It was really cool for me to see a tangible illustration. It looked so cool,” Whatley said.

Whatley said that President Hellie briefly mentioned the current lawsuit against the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity and the college and said that he had nothing new to report on it.

Vice President of Enrollment Dan Preston gave an update on admissions to the college.

“The school is really focusing on recruitment of this next freshmen class,” Whatley said.

Enrollment for the McMinnville campus for the 2017-18 academic year “is expected to reach  460 new students with a retention of 85 percent of the 2016-2017 freshmen class and 75 new transfer students,” according to a document presented at the meeting.  

Whatley also mentioned that all of the faculty up for tenure, promotion or sabbatical were approved by the board. Seven faculty were tenured, six faculty were promoted to the rank of associate professor, three faculty were promoted to rank of professor and 18 faculty members were approved for sabbatical during the fall or spring semester of the 2017-18 academic year.

Whatley said that the college’s strategic plan was updated to include the need for updates to student spaces on campus including improvements to the gym and workout facilities as well as a better student union meeting area – all of which were high priorities of the ASLC Cabinet this year, Whatley said.

Increasing Linfield’s presence on the national and regional level were also key topics added and further discussed in the college’s strategic plan.

Students and members of the Linfield community will have a chance to ask questions about the proposed budget and increase to tuition at the ASLC Senate meeting at 6:30 p.m. on March 2 in TJ Day Hall room 103 where Rodriguez will present and explain the proposed budget and increase to tuition.

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Proposed tuition increase of 3.53 percent highlights Board of Trustees meeting