The Answers to Student Tuition Increase


Brenda Ordoñez, Reporter

It’s that time of year again. Students scramble to file their FAFSA, apply for scholarships and financially plan for next year’s tuition payments. Next year’s tuition…heard that’s rising. By how much? Where will it go? Why? To answer these questions President Andrew Manion and the Vice President of Business and Finance David Wong have been happy to talk more on this issue and inform the students further.  

As students, when there is talk about an increase in tuition panic sets in and emotions flare. However, Vice President Wong is here to explain why that is not necessary. Wong describes Marian’s tuition increase as “Kaizen,” meaning an incremental change in Japanese. He states that, “You don’t want to be zig-zag, a modest, slight increase is sustainable and not a heavy burden on students.” Keeping the students in mind, Marian’s “Kaizen” for next year will be a “minimal 2%” increase, which is $550 more for the entire school year according to Wong. This will accumulate to $275 more per semester. Despite this 2% increase, according to WAICU (Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities), Marian University will still have the second lowest tuition in the state of Wisconsin in terms of private universities. 

Below is the Expenditure Allocations FY for the 2018-19 school year. The following percentages are likely to stay consistent throughout the upcoming years:  (these do not add up to 100, only 94)

  • Aux Entprzs (on campus housing, Sodexo, bookstore…etc.) – 34% 
  • Financial Aid (aid for students) – 18% 
  • Ac Support (Library, Registrar’s Office, Provost Office…etc.) – 11% 
  • Stdnt Srvcs (RA’s, Speakers, Dean of Students, Athletics…etc.) – 16% 
  • Inst Support (Business Office, Presidents Office…etc.) – 10% 
  • Plant Ops (Maintenance of school…etc.) – 5%

When looking at the graph above, it is evident that most of students’ tuition is once again returned to the students in the form of financial aid. Yet, students are also reaping the benefits of their tuition expenses in many other categories displayed on the pie chart. Accumulating all the services shown on the graph, that are used to better academics, athletic programs, as well as students, on-campus life with the maintenance and upkeep of buildings, and student services totals to 51%, not including the 38% that is used for financial aid.  

Having answered the questions of how much tuition will increase and what it will be put towards, there is one question left, and that is “Why?” When asked about Marian’s economic status, President Manion expressed that, “Like most small, tuition-driven institutions, our economic status is what I would describe as challenged.” President Manion also states that the maintenance and upkeep of campus, the competitive wages for employees, and the “academic and support services students need and expect,” is expensive. Yet, he still strives to keep the “Marian educational experience as affordable as possible.” 

If students, staff, or faculty want to learn more about this topic, visit the Marian University website, as the information has been posted and is accessible to all. If students have further questions concerning the tuition increase, President Manion will be holding a presentation as well as answering questions about tuition on April 8th in the Palen room, located in the HSC. This presentation will be during Sabre hour and food and drinks will be provided by Student Senate. It is encouraged that you come with questions of your own on this issue and find the answers you need.