Regents set tuition and mandatory
fees for 2009-10 Tuition and mandatory fees will go up an average of 5.9 percent to cover the public university system's general operations next year. The rates set this week by the South Dakota Board of Regents are effective for the 2009-10 academic year that begins this summer. "These costs were driven by the 3.7 percent inflation rate of the past year and an all-time high in student enrollment growth that we are experiencing as a system," said Regents President Harvey C. Jewett. "Additionally, there has been no new funding from the state this year. In fact, our general fund budget for the coming year was cut by 1.5 percent." The weighted cost of tuition and mandatory fees paid by each South Dakota student is expected to increase by $374 next year. That means the average in-state undergraduate student taking 32 credit hours a year will pay $6,693.57 for tuition and the two mandatory fees paid by all students – the university support fee and the general activity fee. Jewett said the rates set today meet the board's goal of keeping the annual tuition and mandatory fees increase to between 5 percent and 6 percent. "We have deliberately chosen a strategy of annual modest adjustments in tuition rates that do not fluctuate widely from one year to the next," Jewett said. "We are very mindful, however, of the current economic conditions, and believe that an increase of less than $375 next year will be manageable for our students and their families." Regional tuition surveys continue to rate South Dakota public universities' total costs as a bargain. South Dakota ranks above only Wyoming in its total annual costs for an undergraduate resident student, based on 32 credit hours, living in a double-occupancy residence hall room, and having a full meal plan.