UCF students could see a slight increase in student fees come fall 2015, and medical school fees could soon follow suit.
The UCF Board of Trustees Finance and Facilities Committee gathered Wednesday morning in Millican Hall to discuss proposed student fee increases for the College of Medicine Medical Education Program as well as the UCF Athletic, Activity & Service Fee effective fall 2015.
The board discussed a potential 3.3 percent total increase from $36.83 in fall 2014 to $38.03 for fall 2015.
The Activity & Service Fee could also see a 34-cent increase, along with the Athletic fee, which could potentially be upped by 86 cents. There was no increase for the health or transportation access fee discussed at the meeting.
"I just want us all to be very aware that as trustees one of the most important parts of our obligation is to make sure that we are good stewards of our money and that we are providing the most cost-effective education that we can for our students, and I want to make sure that we stay focused on that," said Marcos Marchena, chair of the finance and facilities committee.
Concerning total fees per credit hour, UCF is ninth out of 12 public Florida universities at $57.85. New College of Florida is the lowest at $41.65 and the University of North Florida is the highest at $64.89.
The board also discussed possibly raising fees for the College of Medicine Medical Education Program in the future. The 2014-15 fee per credit hour currently stands at $637.27, with tuition at $25,490.80 for both in-state and out-of-state students. A proposed fee increase to $669.13 would raise tuition for residents and non-residents to $26,765.20.
Although Deborah German, vice president and dean of the College of Medicine, expressed some concerns regarding the need for growth in faculty to meet the demands of UCF's expanding College of Medicine, Marchena decided to give the motion more thought.
President John C. Hitt said he understood the pressures of keeping tuition at its current rate, but he didn't want to get to the point where the College of Medicine would not be able to hire the faculty members needed to educate students.
German said, nationally, medical schools increased their tuition 3 to 5 percent per year, which goes hand-in-hand with UCF increases.
"We are being very careful and responsible with our dollars and trying to keep our tuition as low as possible. The fact we are the second lowest in the state and even with our increase we will continue to be the second lowest in the state," German added.
Editor's note: The previous article stated UCF's Board of Trustees had approved a tuition increase and student fee increases. On Wednesday, the board simply discussed potentially increasing student fees. Also, Deborah German was previously identified as the provost and vice president for Academic Affairs. German is the vice president and dean of UCF's College of Medicine.
Juan David Romero is a Senior Staff Writer for the Central Florida Future.