With plans to make good on its promise last month to significantly increase California resident enrollment at the state’s University of California system, UC President Janet Napolitano announced on Monday a plan to boost in-state enrollment by 10,000 by 2018-19.
Last month Napolitano revealed a plan was on its way to help alleviate frustration California student applicants feel at the increasing difficulty they found in being accepted at their top choice campuses as incoming freshmen.
Adding to the frustration was the high numbers of international and out-of-state student admissions over the last several years. The much higher tuition plus fees that non-residents pay upon admission seemingly influenced their admission rates to the university originally intended for state resident students.
Here are details per UC’s plan to expand in-state enrollment: The plan would add 5,000 in-state resident freshmen and transfer students next fall followed by 2,500 more each of the two following school years. As for the hotly criticized recent increases in undergraduate non-resident enrollment that would continue, but according to the proposal, at a slower pace than in recent years.
As to where funding would originate for the expanded enrollment, another often criticized action would be overhauled. Some funding would come from phasing out the surprising perk of UC and state aid for low-income out-of-state students, a bonus whose sheer existence has angered some legislators already peeved at the increased numbers of non-resident students from the likes of Texas, China and other far-flung locations.
Low-income out-of-state students already enrolled at UC schools will not be affected by the phase-out plan for UC grants to non-residents, but future non-resident students will no longer receive them. UC estimates it will save around $14 million next year by this cutback, an amount that will be put toward the state resident enrollment expansion.
Increasing state resident students by 10,000 would be a 20 percent boost over the 50,000 in-state resident and transfer students that enrolled this fall semester. More students require more of just about everything, and Napolitano acknowledged that UC officials are “now working through the logistics of housing, laboratory availability and classroom sizes.”
But realistically, money talks, buys equipment and pays salaries, so while pumping up California student admissions, the plan would continue to increase the number of out-of-state and foreign students, although at a slower rate than in recent years. The plan envisions a 1,200-student increase next fall semester compared to the approximate 1,660-student increase this fall.
So, what are the numbers that UC finds hard to resist? Non-resident students pay tuition plus fees amount equal to about triple the $12,200 amount California students pay. Add to that reality is the fact that out-of-state tuition will increase each year while for Californians tuition remains set through the 2016-17 school year.
Across all nine UC undergraduate campuses approximately 20 percent of the total 62,000 new freshmen and transfer students come from outside the state, with the highest shares spread at UCLA, UC Berkeley, and UC San Diego.
In addition to the undergraduate enrollment increase, UC is looking to to enroll 600 more graduate students by 2016-17, partly for teaching assistant roles for the added undergraduates targeted to come in.
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