Reciprocity agreement fuels Wisconsin, Minnesota university competition

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With birthrates shrinking the pool of prospective students for Minnesota and Wisconsin state universities the next several years, the tuition reciprocity agreement between the two states is stoking the cross-border rivalry for the brightest students, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

The agreement, in place for decades, allows students from either state to pay in-state tuition in the other. The agreement forces Wisconsin schools near the border – UW-River Falls and UW-Superior – to fiercely compete for Minnesota students, which they have come to rely on to boost enrollments, the newspaper reports.

The raw numbers: In 2011-'12, about 10,500 Wisconsin students attended public universities and technical colleges in Minnesota, and roughly 14,500 Minnesota students enrolled in Wisconsin's state schools under the reciprocity agreement. The state of Minnesota has more data and info on the Minnesota-Wisconsin Interstate Tuition Reciprocity Agreement.

The agreement is likely to remain because it is mutually beneficial, university officials in both states say, the Journal Sentinel reports.

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