Tuition increase media statement from President Joseph I. Castro

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Tuition increase media statement from President Joseph I. Castro

Today’s action by the CSU Board of Trustees is a necessary step toward helping Fresno State and other CSU campuses in addressing the academic needs of our students. The funds will be used to improve student achievement, which cannot be accomplished without hiring more faculty and reducing class sizes. These investments will enable our students to benefit from greater academic and support services while aiding them in progressing faster to graduation, which is our No. 1 focus.

The CSU has been extremely fortunate to have weathered five years without any tuition increases. Even with this increase of $270 a year for undergraduates, Fresno State remains the most affordable campus in the CSU system when tuition and fees are considered.

We understand that a tuition increase of any size could cause concern for some of our students, many of whom are the first in their family to attend college. As always, our financial aid team is committed to assisting students in accessing the available resources to help them graduate with as little debt as possible.

We award more than $220 million in financial aid each year, approximately 70 percent of which is in grants or scholarships, meaning it never has to be paid back.

Currently financial aid covers the entire cost of tuition for roughly 60 percent of Fresno State students. The tuition increase will not impact our ability to continue to provide that level of student financial support.

Eighty percent of Fresno State students receive some form of financial aid, and average loan debt for Fresno State students is $18,000, well below the national average of $30,000.