The Wayne State University Board of Governors on June 22 approved a 3.5% tuition increase for both undergraduate and graduate students. Despite the move, the board’s approval of a flat-rate tuition model for undergraduates last December will actually result in a lower cost for students who enroll in 15 or more credits moving forward.
The significantly restructured tuition model allows undergraduate students to pay the same amount when they enroll in between 12 to 18 credits during any one semester. For example, an undergraduate, lower-division student enrolling in fall 2023 would pay $6,246.49 in tuition for 15 credits as compared to $6,466.35 for fall 2022. Students can estimate their tuition cost using Wayne State's tuition calculator tool.
Even though the 2023-24 tuition adjustment is expected to be less than that of many Michigan colleges, the action required much board study and deliberation.
“The top priority of this board is student success, and that was certainly top of mind late last year when we approved our restructured tuition model,” said Board of Governors Chair Mark Gaffney. “As to the 3.5% tuition rate increase, as the governing body of the university, we are keenly aware of the financial burdens many of our students face. However, faced with ongoing economic challenges, the board felt that this increase was necessary to ensure Wayne State continues to provide the excellent experience our students expect and deserve.”
The tuition increase is part of a $698 million general fund operating budget approved by the board for Fiscal Year 2023-24.
“Enabling students to pay one flat price for full-time tuition allows them to save money now and in the future. It makes great financial sense for students,” said David Massaron, Wayne State University’s chief financial officer and senior vice president. “In making it more affordable to take a full course load, Wayne State is helping students graduate and enter the workforce sooner, while also saving on room and board, transportation, and other expenses associated with going to college.”
In addition to saving students money, the board approved the flat-rate tuition model in order to help Wayne State sustain its long-running improvement in six-year graduation rates.
To earn their degrees on time, undergraduates typically need to take an average of 15 credit hours per semester. Research has shown that full-time students have higher academic performance and are more likely to graduate sooner. This is the next step of a decade-long effort by Wayne State to increase its graduation rates. The university is one of the most rapidly improving large public universities in the nation and has become a national model for student success.
Students are encouraged to register for fall classes as soon as possible to get the best selection of courses and times. It is also suggested students work with an academic advisor to select appropriate course schedules that will allow them to make steady progress toward their degrees. Advisors may also direct students to support services to help them manage their coursework.
Part-time undergraduate students, graduate students and law students will continue to be charged per credit hour. The university’s financial aid budget has been reallocated to better assist students with financial need.
The move to a flat-rate tuition also places Wayne State below the average cost of Michigan public universities for full-time, lower-division resident students. Wayne State continues to deliver excellent value for students and has the lowest tuition of Michigan’s three major research universities.
“Wayne State remains one of the best investments a person can make in their future, and a leader in providing affordable access to higher education,” said Wayne State President M. Roy Wilson. “We are proud to be one of the top-performing schools in the nation — and the best in Michigan — when it comes to social mobility, helping economically disadvantaged students succeed and graduate.”