Skip to main content

U of M wants another tuition freeze ... if Legislature hikes funding


That two-year tuition freeze at the University of Minnesota was so popular the U wants another one. But only on the condition that the Legislature boosts state funding of the university by 10 percent over the biennium.

That's the cornerstone of a budget proposal U of M President Eric Kaler is presenting to the Board of Regents on Friday, the Minnesota Daily reports.

The two-year tuition freeze that started in 2012 applied to in-state tuition for undergraduates. Under Kaler's proposal, that freeze would be extended for another two years and expanded to include graduate and professional programs.

In return, Kaler wants to see the Legislature boost state funding of the university by 10.6 percent over the two years. The Star Tribune says that would restore state support to its peak level of 2008 and would amount to a $127 million increase.

If the Regents sign off on Kaler's plan, that will be the funding proposal the university brings to the State Capitol next year.

Kaler tells MPR News that without such a deal the university would face raising tuition for undergrads by 3 percent and a 3.5 percent hike for graduate students.

He's optimistic about his plan's chances at the Capitol, telling MPR "People understand very clearly that freezing tuition drives accessibility and affordability for middle-class Minnesota families."

Ryan Winkler of Golden Valley, who sits on the House Higher Education Finance and Policy Committee, tweeted his support for the proposal almost immediately.

But Terri Bonoff of Minnetonka, a DFLer who chairs the Senate Finance Committee's higher education division, is not sure taxpayers should pay for the university's tuition freeze. Bonoff tells the Pioneer Press she's skeptical that the state budget will have room for a 10 percent increase in higher ed spending.

"Has the economy grown enough to support a 10 percent increase?" Bonoff asks."That's not something I would bet on."

Separately, the U of M laid out for regents a plan to expand its Rochester campus. The Post Bulletin reports that over 20 years the downtown campus would grow to include seven buildings.

ABC 6 News says the university envisions the number of Rochester students nearly doubling within ten years, from today's 800 to 1,500 in a decade.

Next Up

Timothy William Tuit

2 people plead guilty in fatal Dakota County home invasion

Two others charged in the incident will go to trial next year.

south lake minnetonka police department

25-year-old arrested after multi-city police chase in western suburbs

Police were called for a welfare check but learned it was a domestic violence incident.

Screen Shot 2021-12-02 at 8.34.54 AM

After getting COVID, Harrison Smith still not considering vaccine

The Vikings safety says he doesn't plan on getting vaccinated.


First omicron variant COVID case detected in MN

The individual is an adult male who lives in Hennepin County and had recently traveled.

wright county Sheriff Sean Deringer

Minnesota sheriff bashes MPD, 'disgusted' by officers' actions

The sheriff said he will no longer defend the Minneapolis Police Department.

Screen Shot 2021-12-02 at 7.59.52 AM

More than 2 years after announcing, Duck Donuts finally opens at MOA

The grand opening of the new location took place Wednesday.

unsplash - school girl students

St. Paul is closing 6 schools amid declining enrollment

The board revised the plan after the school communities voiced concerns.

Karl-Anthony Towns

X-rays negative after Karl-Anthony Towns takes scary fall

Towns crashed hard to the ground late in the game Wednesday night.

Minneapolis police

2 more homicides push Minneapolis closer to record set in 1995

The deadly shootings happened on the city's North Side Wednesday night.

Karl-Anthony Towns

KAT sets a franchise record, leaves early in loss to Wizards

Towns fell on his back in the final minutes of a loss in Washington.


U of M president proposes 2.5% tuition hike in Twin Cities

It's Eric Kaler's final budget proposal as president.