It’s going to cost about three percent more to go to college in South Carolina this fall. All the major public colleges and universities in the state have announced tuition increases ranging from 2.5 to 3.5 percent.
The University of South Carolina is raising tuition by 3.25 percent, the largest increase in five years. The increase for in-state students will be $373, bringing tuition to $11,855. USC senior Elise Alduino says, “It is very hard, and I have a younger sibling who is a freshman this past year and I have a brother that went to undergrad here and is now in grad school here, so as you can imagine an increase for not one person but three, and so it’s just a lot of money to think about.” It’s worse for her family because they’re from Texas. Out-of-state students will pay $985 more.
Clemson is raising tuition by 3.14 percent, a $218 increase per semester for in-state undergraduate students. Out-of-state students will pay 4.27 percent more, or $700. The university says, “Revenues from the increases will cover cost-of-living and state-mandated health and retirement costs, increased utility safety and security costs and facility stewardship.”
Part of the reason for the increase is dwindling state support. Before the recession, USC got 23 percent of its total budget from the state in the 2007-2008 budget year. But that amount has dropped every year, and was 10.5 percent this year.
The Citadel is raising tuition by 2.9 percent. Coastal Carolina’s increase is 3.29 percent, while the College of Charleston is raising tuition by 3.5 percent. Francis Marion and SC State are raising tuition by the same percentage as USC, 3.25 percent. Winthrop has the smallest increase at 2.5 percent.
Back in 2006, then-Gov. Mark Sanford proposed putting a cap on tuition increases, but state lawmakers didn’t go along.