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Tuition numbers released four months early

Costs to attend Wartburg have been released for the 2015-2016 academic year, four months earlier than normal.

Total cost will be $46,200.  That includes tuition, fees, and room and board.

According to an email sent to students, it is the lowest percentage increase in 25 years, with an increase of 2.58 percent.

President Darrel Colson said the early release of next year’s cost will hopefully make it easier for students and their families to make financial plans.

“We have heard students express concerns in the past about the suddenness of the announcement, the sort of traditional announcement in the middle of the winter semester, doesn’t really give people time to plan,” Colson said.

The intent is to continue releasing numbers around this time in future years. Colson said the Board of Regents asked administrators to bring proposals dealing with total cost to them earlier.

There are several reasons for the lower increase, Colson said. One of them is the use of money from a strategic fund to help smooth the transition.

Wartburg has four strategic funds. The fund that will be used to keep costs down for next year is the plant fund, Colson said. This fund is usually large and constantly receiving and distributing money. The fund is mainly used for repairs around campus, he said.

Next year’s total cost increase of a little over $1,000 is the smallest dollar increase in 13 years.

While there is still an increase, Colson said he hopes the smaller increase and being aware of the increase sooner will help students be able to stay at Wartburg.

“I always worry about every single student who wants to be at Wartburg, who is enjoying the experience here, who is learning, who is developing the skills she needs for the future, feels constrained by finances and even pressured by finances not to stay here but to do something different,” Colson said.

Having numbers out now may also be comforting to prospective students because they know now what costs for their first-year will be, Colson said.

Looking to the future, Colson said costs for attending Wartburg will continue to increase, although he hopes those increases will be low.

“I bet I can honestly say there won’t ever be a decrease because I know that we invest so much in people, and those people both deserve and need increased benefits and increased salaries,” Colson said.

However, he said, “We are so eager to make college as affordable as we can for the students who want to be here,” Colson said.

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