CMU trustees: ‘No undergrad tuition increase’
Fall student payments may be deferred until November
In a virtual meeting today, the Central Michigan University Board of Trustees voted unanimously to freeze undergraduate tuition rates and all mandatory fees for all new and returning students for fiscal year 2020-2021.
The decision was made in an effort to support students and their families as many struggle with financial hardship caused by COVID-19.
"With added pressures from the effects of this pandemic, we made this decision to provide a level of stability and certainty to students and their families as they plan for the year ahead," said CMU President Bob Davies. "Freezing tuition rates allows us to continue to offer students a high-quality education at an affordable price."
Trustees have not yet set 2020-2021 graduate and doctoral tuition rates.
With this move, Central's cumulative tuition rate increase over the past decade is expected to remain the lowest in the state.
Davies noted that freezing tuition rates is just one of the ways CMU is providing financial relief, a sense of security and added stability for students and families during this difficult time. Another such effort is the deferment of fall 2020 student payments until Nov. 1.
"We have initiated deferred payment and flexible payment plans, and we are not assessing late fees that would prevent current students from enrolling this year in classes for future semesters," Davies said in his opening report to the board.
In other action, trustees also approved:
- Nearly 3,100 May 2020 graduates, who will be recognized at a commencement ceremony in August. This includes 2,181 bachelor's degrees, 662 master's degrees, 201 doctoral degrees, six specialist degrees and 36 graduate certificates.
- Policies and bylaws for CMU's participation in E-sports Collegiate Inc., which was established by Mid-American Conference member institutions.
- The collaborative supports the scheduling of competition seasons and matches among member teams, ensuring uniformity in minimum technical standards for competitions. Additionally, it defines criteria for student player competition eligibility.
- Authorization of university lines of credit, in the event they are needed to provide funds for general university operating purposes.
Davies opened his report to the board by addressing the COVID-19 pandemic, expressing his gratitude to those who make it possible for CMU to remain open and mission-focused during the crisis, including the Emergency Management Team.
He once again thanked students, faculty, and staff for adapting to sudden, unexpected changes, having to learn and work remotely virtually overnight.
He also acknowledged the outstanding support of CMU's alumni and friends.
"Since the crisis began, our alumni and supporters have contributed more than $36,000 to the Student Emergency Fund to provide help for students who have been hardest hit," he said. "In the past month alone, we have distributed nearly $70,000 to students in need."
Davies also highlighted many ways that CMU faculty, staff and students are supporting communities throughout the state during the COVID-19 crisis, including creating masks for health care workers, volunteering at screening and testing sites, and helping teachers prepare for extended remote learning.
Additional accolades include:
- College of Business Administration seniors Jake Aymen and Eric Scott for being the first CMU team to win the National Investment Banking Competition of Canada, beating more than 10,000 participants from more than 200 schools worldwide.
- Austin Konkel, a junior math major from Warren, Michigan, for receiving the prestigious Goldwater Scholarship.
- Meghan Dyer, a senior majoring in secondary English education, and Anastasia Bjork, a senior majoring in health administration, for being awarded Fulbright Awards to teach abroad once it is safe to travel.
- CMU College of Medicine's fourth Match Day, where nearly half of its class of 2020 matched in Michigan to complete their residencies.
Davies also acknowledged Scott Strong, director of internal audit, who retires this month, and General Counsel Manuel Rupe, who will become associate dean of legal affairs for CMU's College of Medicine July 1.