Students voice concerns over eliminating tuition cap

Published On: Mar 10 2013 04:14:14 PM CDT   Updated On: Mar 10 2013 06:43:38 PM CDT
LA CROSSE, Wis. -

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's proposed budget raises some concerns for college students who are already struggling to pay for school.

In the proposed 2013-15 budget, the 5.5% tuition increase cap for state universities would no longer be in place. That means colleges would be able to increase tuition as much as they want.

The topic was discussed on Friday during a meeting held at UW-La Crosse. It was a chance for students to learn more about the proposal and have a chance to voice their concerns.

Nick Bezier, the president of the UW-La Crosse Student Association, says there are concerns about eliminating the tuition cap.  However, he says it could help improve the quality of education.

"We have a faculty compensation gap that's very concerning and threatens the system," said Bezier.

"However, the tuition cap is something that we want to see to help protect students so hopefully they'll be in support of that," he added.

UW Board of Regents President Brent Smith attended the meeting. Smith says even if the tuition cap is eliminated, this proposal would result in the lowest increase the system has seen in years.

"It will be the lowest increase we've had for a decade," said Smith.

"I think the Governor's budget, although we won't make that decision until June or July, will enable us to keep that significantly below (a) 5.5 (percentage increase)," he added.

Smith is hopeful that the proposal will help make the UW System more competitive when it comes to pay and benefits for faculty and staff.