University of Florida Students will be paying a 9% increase in tuition starting this fall after the Board of Governors approved tuition increases across the state in yesterday’s meeting. Despite the rise in tuition, Janine Sikes, Director of public affairs at UF, says students are still getting a good price for higher education.[audio:http://www.wuft.org/media/audio/Sikes2tuition.mp3]
Sikes says that with the budget cuts for Florida universities this year, an increase in tuition is necessary to cover some of these losses.[audio:http://www.wuft.org/media/audio/Sikes3tuition.mp3]
Along with Sikes, John Biro, the UF Faculty Union President, also feels the tuition increases are necessary but painful measures that have to be made due to the budget cuts. But Biro says the main reason we are seeing hikes in tuition is that the Florida Legislator won’t provide better funding for higher education.[audio:http://www.wuft.org/media/audio/Biro2tuition.mp3]
Biro feels Governor Scott and the Florida legislature are treating Florida’s universities as businesses and not places of learning, and that they don’t understand how important higher education is.[audio:http://www.wuft.org/media/audio/Biro3tuition.mp3]
Both Biro and Sikes think the tuition increases are necessary evils, but that UF is fortunate to only receive a 9 percent hike versus the 15 percent increase other universities have received.