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Grand Valley Trustees adopt budget, set tuition

Posted on July 13, 2012

Grand Valley State University’s Board of Trustees approved the university’s FY 2013 budget at its July 13 meeting, balancing the financial needs of students with the need to sustain the quality of its academic programs.

The board also set tuition, keeping Grand Valley’s tuition in the lower half of all Michigan’s public universities. Tuition for an undergraduate Michigan resident will increase by $181 per semester beginning this fall semester. The annual tuition will be $10,078. This is one of the smallest tuition increases in the past two decades.

University leaders cited research showing that Grand Valley has held changes in its operating costs to the rate of inflation for the last twenty years, and that it has reduced the cost of producing a degree by 14% in the last decade. 

The reality -- and challenge -- is that state support in the last twenty years has diminished from two-thirds of Grand Valley’s revenue to just 17% of revenue.  State aid was cut by 15% last year alone. The university is expected to receive state funding of $52.6 million plus a one-time state grant of $2.8 million. The entire state allocation will be used for student financial aid, debt service, capital maintenance and utilities for classroom buildings. 

“We continue to increase our efficiency in operations while we achieve steady improvements in our classrooms, labs and overall campus life for students,” Pres. Thomas J. Haas said. “Grand Valley has the lowest per-student funding in the state and nearly the lowest in the nation. The challenge is clear. We are increasing financial aid beyond the increase in tuition and we’re keeping our tuition rate below the state average for public universities. Our graduates are sought after by employers, and we continue to keep high-quality, well-educated workers in the state.”

“We approved this budget keeping access and affordability for students top of mind,” said Shelley Padnos, chair of the Board of Trustees. “We have to maintain the quality the state needs from Grand Valley to produce the strong graduates who are having a real hand in leading us to a more prosperous time. This university issues an Accountability Report each year that shows Grand Valley graduates are finding jobs and moving into careers and graduate schools. The return on investment is obvious for the students who choose Grand Valley State University, but it’s clear that the entire state benefits from its graduates and the university’s presence.”

The private-public partnership is a strong component of the university’s success, and the faculty and staff are part of that tremendous support. More than half (55%) of Grand Valley’s employees gave back to the university to support its programs and student scholarships. This figure is well above the national average.

For additional information about how Grand Valley is accountable, visit

To see tuition rates for other Michigan colleges and universities, click here.

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