Editorial: U-C an increase in your tuition

In the aftermath of the University of California application season, angry students are protesting in the streets of California against the planned 26.7 percent tuition increase expected to take place gradually over the next five years, according to a recent proposal by the UC Board of Regents.

Altogether, UC tuition has nearly doubled in the past decade, and with the introduction of the new proposal tuition, costs will raise to $15,564 (for in-state students), according to the Los Angeles Times. That plan sounds detrimental to incoming freshmen, who have already been warned about student debt prior to these hikes. So we ask, why are the UCs consistently raising costs despite disapproval from both the state legislature and student population?

The real reason behind these student paid- tuition hikes is because the state government refuses to increase its UC funding to the scale the schools desire. Therefore, until the state complies with the exact funding measure that UC schools are requesting, students are left to deal with the financial difference.

Currently, the state has been steadily increasing its UC funds by 5%, according to December Regents meeting in San Francisco, but that is still not enough for the powerful institution. It is clear that the UCs’ money hungry nature has blinded them from actual problems that the state must deal with, such as K-12 schooling, highway projects and problems with the poor and disabled, all of which are areas that the state must focus on prior to supporting the already strong UC system. Many have drawn the analogy of students being held hostage by the University of California for a state ransom.

University funding is not outrightly misguided, but what worries the state is the recent expenditures the University of California has been making. In the September meeting, the Regents agreed to pay raises for chancellors who already make salaries of $300,000 and vowed to continue raising chancellor salaries on the grounds of “correcting injustices” of hard working executives, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Also at this meeting, the Board concluded that the University of San Francisco’s Chancellor, Sam Hawgood, would receive a salary of $750,000 on top of the housing provided for all chancellors, making him the highest paid UC chancellor, according to the Los Angeles Times. In comparison to Hawgood, President Barack Obama makes nearly half his salary at $400,000 a year. In retrospect, it is unbelievable that these ridiculous salaries will be the root of the UC’s proposed tuition hikes.

What the future students ask of their schools is to keep their affordable prices, rather than falling into the lucrative ways of higher education systems by rationing the money they receive from the state in a more effective manner. Implementing online courses, integrating three year degrees, and considering to offer credits to students who show proof of competency in a subject are all practical solutions to avoid tuition hikes.

The UC institutions have often prided themselves as being both affordable and accessible, yet recent events have caused students and parents to think otherwise. In essence, the UC tuition raise is just another case where greed and profits outweigh morals and mission statements.