Students of the California State University system will see a significant hike in costs next semester.
The CSU Board of Trustees approved a 12 percent tuition increase on Tuesday, a result of a reduction of state funding to the CSU system, according to a CSU press release.
The CSU is expected to receive $650 million less, for a total of $2.1 billion in state funds.
The 12 percent increase comes after the trustees already approved a 10 percent – or $222 – per semester tuition increase for fall in November.
This means that overall tuition will increase by $294 per semester for full-time undergraduate students, which totals $588 more for the entire year. This brings the annual tuition fee for undergraduate students to $5,472, not including campus-based fees.
In addition, tuition will increase by $339 each semester for credential programs and by $360 for graduate students.
For students like Amy Reyes, the additional $588 will likely make an impact.
“Without the increases, I was still struggling, having to add my own money for books and tuitions that wasn’t covered,” said Reyes, who has been attending CSU East Bay for one year.
CSU officials said in a press release issued Tuesday that the reduction in state funding has left CSU with “no other choice if we are to maintain quality and access to the [university]," said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed.
"The magnitude of this cut, compounded by the uncertainty of the final amount of the reduction, will have negative impacts on the CSU long after this upcoming fiscal year has come and gone,” Reed said.
Still, the CSU will continue offering as many classes as possible and keeping its open enrollment for spring 2012, which is important for community college transfer students, Reed said.
About one-third of the revenue that will come from the tuition increases will go toward financial aid, covering tuition for approximately 170,000 students, according to the press release.
The 2011-12 budget that allocates $2.1 billion in state funding to the CSU will be “the lowest level of state support the system has received since the 1998-99 fiscal year,” according to the press release.
In a counter-jab aimed at critics of the cuts, Gov. Jerry Brown is questioning the salaries of top administrators in the CSU system. He recently sent a letter to the university system's board of trustees expressing his concern about "the ever-escalating pay packages awarded to your top administrators."
CSU Chancellor Reed is asking the board to set the salary for the new president of San Diego State University at $400,000 — $100,000 higher than the university's former president, the Sacramento Bee reports.
"At a time when the state is closing its courts, laying off public school teachers and shutting senior centers, it is not right to be raising the salaries of leaders who — of necessity — must demand sacrifice from everyone else," Brown wrote.
CSU serves approximately 412,000 students on 23 campuses throughout the state.
Jill Replogle contributed to this story.