Applies to Full-Time Undergraduate Students Enrolled at Adrian Campus; President Sister Peg Albert Commits to Keeping Higher Education Affordable
Recognizing the current economic climate in the state of Michigan and the national trend of rising tuition costs in higher education, Siena Heights University is taking a bold step to remain affordable for its students.
President Sister Peg Albert, OP, PhD, announced the private Catholic university located in Adrian, Mich., is freezing tuition rates for full-time undergraduate students enrolled at its Adrian campus. This freeze will be in effect through the rest of the winter 2008 semester as well as for the 2008-09 fall and winter semesters.
“I recognize the value of a Siena Heights University education, however, I am also aware that many public and private institutions are pricing many students out of the market,” President Albert said. “We want to be among the leaders reversing that trend. I want to assure our current students, and any prospective student considering Siena Heights University, we will do everything we can to keep a Siena Heights education affordable.”
President Albert said what sparked the decision was hearing Siena students’ concerns – as well as the growing national worries – of college affordability.
“I would like (a tuition freeze) because there wouldn’t be any surprises as to what I owe,” said SHU junior business major Elizabeth Artz of Jackson, Mich. “I hate playing the guessing game when it comes to applying for a loan; with a tuition freeze I could calculate my finances better.”
“Tuition has gone up each year I have been here, so it would be nice to not have a change,” said junior Adam DeLine, a history/religious studies major from Adrian, Mich. “Having a little bit of a break with a tuition freeze would be great.”
Siena Heights also analyzed data from a recent comprehensive study examining the university’s current tuition rates. In a survey recently conducted by the Chronicle of Higher Education, Siena Heights ranked 16th out of 28 Michigan private institutions in tuition price, and below the average of $19,026.
According to one of the nation’s top higher education marketing consultants, the price of higher education continues to increase, and institutions could soon be feeling pressure from government to control these rising costs.
“I applaud Siena Heights’ decision to step out and take the lead in Michigan, especially with the current economic situation the state is facing,” said Robert A. Sevier, PhD, vice president, strategy for Stamats, Inc. “The decision by the university to freeze its tuition is evidence of its commitment to the students and families of Michigan, many of whom are facing a tough economic climate. There is always a delicate balance between value and quality, and it is encouraging to see Siena Heights cares about both.”
The average tuition and fee increase nationally for private, four-year colleges this year was 6.3 percent, according to InsideHigherEd.com. Siena Heights has stayed below that mark with a 6.24 average increase in tuition over the past five years. According to information provided by the Presidents Council, a nonprofit organization serving Michigan’s state universities, tuition at state public colleges and universities jumped an average of 11 percent for the 2007-08 academic year.
“A college education for every Michigan citizen is key to diversifying our economy and creating jobs in the 21st century,” Governor Jennifer M. Granholm said. “I am pleased that Siena Heights University shares our commitment to making college affordable and accessible for all our citizens.”
“Siena Heights has always taken a student-centered approach, and we want to put ‘our money where our mouths are,’ ” President Albert said. “I believe Siena Heights is a great value among Michigan private universities and colleges. Despite being a tuition-driven private university, our Dominican tradition demands we remain accessible to students from all socioeconomic backgrounds.”
In addition to the decision to freeze tuition, Siena Heights is expanding the allowable number of semester hours for its “flat rate tuition” from 12-16 semester hours to 12-18 hours. This will assist students to enroll for more hours without incurring as much cost.
For more information about Siena Heights University, please call 1-800-521-0009 or 517-264-7180.