Published on January 13, 2006 by Philip Poole  
Posted by Philip Poole on 2006-03-02

Samford University's board of trustees has approved a $679 per semester tuition increase for full-time undergraduate students the 2006-07 academic year. Housing will increase about $42 per semester and board about $45 per semester depending on the housing and meal plans selected.

At the same time, trustees also approved adding more than $1million in scholarships and need-based grants for 2006-07. Better than expected investment earnings and new scholarship gifts provided the additional scholarship funding, according to University officials.

Tuition for part-time undergraduate students will increase $49 per credit hour. Students in Samford's Metro College, an adult learning evening program, will have an increase of $24 per credit hour.

An increase of $741 per semester was approved for Samford's Cumberland School of Law, while students in the McWhorter School of Pharmacy will see an increase of $633 per semester. Other graduate programs will have slight tuition increases based on program-specific fee structures.

All increases are effective June 1. Complete financial information for the 2006-07 academic year will be available later in March for current and new students.

The additional tuition revenue will support an anticipated operating budget of more than $115 million for 2006-07.

"Our increases are, proportionally, not unlike cost-of-living adjustments and cost of goods that individuals experience at home and in their businesses," said Joseph W. Mathews, Samford's vice president for business affairs.

"The University has been impacted by significant increases in the cost of gasoline, natural gas and electricity in addition to other increases that are part of doing business in today's economic climate," added Clayton Fogg, director of finance.

It also is a major priority for the University to continue providing the best possible educational experience for its students. "Quality programs and faculty do not come without cost," Fogg said.

Even with the increases, Samford's costs remain about 26 percent below the national average for private universities, Fogg said. And, Samford includes in its tuition and required fees all costs except parking and some applied music fees.

"We do not assess additional mandatory technology fees, building use fees and student activity fees that often drive up the total cost to the student at many other colleges and universities," he added.

Even with the tuition increase, the University continually must find additional revenue sources to meet budget demands, said Michael D. Morgan, Samford's vice president for university relations. Tuition revenue accounts for only about 70 percent of Samford's total budget.

"Our desire is to keep increases to the lowest figure possible while still providing the level of programs and service that our students and alumni have come to expect from Samford," Morgan said. "Keeping Samford affordable for our constituents is important."

Morgan stressed that tuition increases will not be used for building projects underway on the Samford campus. Costs for those projects will come from other sources.

Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.