Raising rates

Room and board rates will increase for the 2019-20 academic year

Graphic by: Sarah Massey I Production Manager

Ferris’ Board of Trustees has approved an increase in housing and dining costs by $208 for the 2019-20 academic year.

In an effort to make Ferris’ room and board costs more aligned with other Michigan universities and to ease the financial burden of students, Ferris decided to keep the room and board rates stagnant from the 2017-18 academic year into 2018-19. With the exception of this year, in
which the rate didn’t change, the $208 increase will be the smallest in the past five years.

“I think it would be hard for the university to not raise or cut at a time where they’re not getting as much income. It doesn’t surprise me, but I’m glad it’s on the lower end of the spectrum,” Ferris business administration senior Andrew Kapanowski said. “I think it’s just what needs to be done with the way the numbers are looking as far as student enrollment.”

Between the 2014-15 and 2017-18 academic years, the cost of room and board increased on average by $246 per year, with the most significant increase being $266 in 2015- 16. These increases have been smaller than many other comparable Michigan universities, which has helped Ferris go from the second most expensive room and board in 2009-10, to the fifth least expensive in 2018-19 amongst comparable universities.

“You have to give them credit. If that was their goal to get their name off the top of that list, then I think they did it,” Kapanowski said. “It shows that they at least made the effort last year to not raise anything, and when you’re looking at a budget you can’t always do the nice thing or what people want to do, but I think they’ve at least tried to minimize the impact.”

Comparatively, Michigan Technological University had an average increase of $325 per year from 2014-15 through 2017-18. Northern Michigan University had an average increase of $408 per year during the same time span and Eastern Michigan University had an annual increase of $470, nearly double that of Ferris.

Ferris pre-medical sophomore Hunter Poser said she is glad to see Ferris working towards making room and board costs more affordable. Poser also said that as Ferris increases scholarships and incentives to stay on campus, keeping the room and board rates affordable allows students to stretch their money further.

“With Ferris already offering all of the scholarships to help us with room and board, it’s really good to have them lowering room and board because that’s less we have to pay, and that’s more that scholarships help us,” Poser said. “If Ferris can continue working on this, it will help the people that struggle with paying and make things a lot easier for people like me.”