Nebraska lowers tuition costs despite other schools raising theirs

Other schools, however, aren’t being that generous.

After receiving more than $15 million in COVID-19 aid, the University of Nebraska has lowered online tuition for its students.

After receiving more than $15 million in federal aid from the CARES Act, the University of Nebraska has announced that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it will lower online tuition rates for in-state students.

According to The Daily Nebraskan, the school is set to fix the online tuition rate at $259 per credit in fall 2020 for students living in the Cornhusker State. With multiple campuses across the state, this could amount to a 9 percent reduction from the previous year. 

This new rate is now the same fixed price for the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s residential tuition price.

UN  President Ted Carter said this decision is aimed to help students who are struggling financially during the COVID-19 pandemic: 

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“In these challenging times, our No. 1 priority is taking care of Nebraskans,” Carter said, adding that this opens up many opportunities for students pursuing a degree. 

“We want to make sure every Nebraskan has an opportunity to pursue a university education, no matter their circumstance. Making our online programs even more affordable is another way for us to provide quality, flexible options for the people of our state.”

But while Nebraska has given its students a generous break in tuition costs, other colleges are not so willing. 

Many schools are continuing to raise tuition for the fall semester despite the financial hardships that have fallen on students.

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Campus Reform found several institutions that have committed to increasing the cost of tuition for the approaching school year. Rice University recently announced a 4.1 percent increase in its undergraduate program coming out to $50,310, while also raising room and board fees 3.7 percent.

Stanford University announced an increase of almost 5 percent, bringing the cost of full-time tuition to $73,425, while Texas Tech, Baylor, Yale Harvard, and others plan to raise tuition by 2.5 percent to more than 4 percent for the 2020-21 school year. With more than 40 million people out of work since the coronavirus ravaged the country, many students face the threat of college becoming too costly for them to attend. 

University of Nebraska-Lincoln student Sarah Sloboth told Campus Reform she was pleased with the school’s decision to lower tuition.

“I was glad they lowered the tuition rates but I also understood if they couldn’t because it is a binding contract and no one ever expected a pandemic to occur,” Sloboth told Campus Reform, adding that the school’s response to the pandemic has been “amazing.”

“Compared to other schools [the school has] done an amazing job accommodating the students, allowing them to stay in their on-campus housing for however long they needed but recommended going home if they were able to… I know other universities are not as considerate as the University of Nebraska-Lincoln so I personally am impressed with them.” 

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Sloboth felt that other schools raising tuition could result in less enrollment next year.

“I don’t think raising tuition rates is a smart idea at all. The economy is struggling so much… Why would raising the rates be appealing to people who want to further their education when having a job is a privilege right now[?] If anything it should be a reduced rate in order for enrollment numbers to stay steady.” 

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