Please to receive this letter acknowledging our strong commitment to higher education funding in this year's state budget. As a result college students attending UMass or any state college will not see any tuition OR fee hike this coming year. Some welcome relief for students and parents.
On behalf of the Massachusetts State University Council of Presidents, the nine State University campuses and our 52,000 students, I write today to extend my deepest appreciation to you for championing the historic investment made in our State University system during the FY14 budget deliberations. As a result of your leadership, the State Universities are able to freeze tuition and institutional fees for the upcoming 2013-2014 academic year. The additional $15m in our system is an important first step towards an equitable funding of Massachusetts’ institutions of public higher education, and will significantly benefit our students and their families.
This investment and our commitment to freeze our institutional fees will expand student access at a time of growing demand for a State University education. It will help our students graduate with a great education and less debt, while providing expanded opportunities for employment and growth. This investment in the State University system is good for our economy, good for our Commonwealth and great for our students and their families.
The additional $15m in the State University system moves us closer to the goal of the state funding 50 percent of the cost of educating our students, and will enable the system to continue to remain competitive, accessible and affordable to residents of the Commonwealth. In providing this additional funding during a time of continued fiscal constraints, you have recognized the State Universities’ critical role in the Massachusetts economy. Your State University system graduates more than 10,000 students each year, and more than 85 percent of our graduates remain in the Commonwealth to live, work and raise their families. Ninety percent of our graduates are working or continuing postgraduate education within one year of graduation. State University graduates are your public school teachers, police officers, nurses, social workers, white-collar professionals and more; they are helping to drive our Massachusetts economy and make the Commonwealth what it is today.
We again extend to you our sincere thanks for your renewed commitment in the State University system and for helping us to provide the strongest possible system of public higher education for the residents of Massachusetts. We look forward to continuing to work together to build upon this historic investment and to make our public universities the best and most affordable universities in the country.
Vincent A. Pedone
State University Council of Presidents