Students will pay 4.5 percent more for a year at Taylor
By Braden Ochs | Echo
Taylor will increase costs for the 2017–18 school year by 4.5 percent.
According to the financial aid office, this means the price for a year at Taylor, including room and board, will be $42,130, as opposed to the current 2016–17 year’s $40,317. The tuition price has risen by $1,408, room and board costs have gone up $400 and extra fees compromise the remaining $5 increase.
“That’s a bummer,” junior Joshua James said.
According to Tim Nace, director of financial aid, tuition covers the faculty and staff salaries, health coverage and financial aid. Due to increases in annual salaries for faculty and staff, which takes up the majority of tuition, national health insurance premiums and Taylor’s contribution to financial aid packages for incoming students, tuition is raised every year in order to keep up with inflation.
The rise in financial aid packages is one of the bigger reasons to increase tuition. According to Stephen Olson, vice president for finance, there are currently fewer than 10 people paying the full price of the tuition bill. That means almost every Taylor student has financial aid of some kind.
Financial aid affects tuition costs more than students may realize. Olson compares it to a grocery store coupon, which discounts the price for the consumer. It does not benefit the store except for attracting the consumer’s attention and resources. Financial aid works in a similar way. It is a discounted price to help students pay for tuition but requires the difference in cost to be absorbed elsewhere. When most of the students need financial aid, tuition must rise in order to fill that budget gap.
The second reason to increase tuition is the jump in health coverage cost for faculty and staff. According to the Indianapolis Business Journal, there is a 16 percent average increase for medical coverage in Indiana in the year of 2017. This increase is the result of the silver-tier plan, a health plan category, which covers an average of 70 percent of medical claims.
The third reason for the tuition increase is the rise in faculty and staff salaries. Nace explained many higher education institutions are labor intensive. Nace thinks faculty and staff are needed for Taylor’s existence, and without them Taylor cannot maintain a stable education program.
“Without financial strength, we really can’t deliver a robust, quality program,” Olson said.
Taylor is a non-profit organization, which means its goal isn’t making money, according to Olson. Yet when money gets in the way of delivering a sound learning program, Taylor needs to draw more from its price in order to continue serving.
“(The tuition increase) would make it more difficult for me to be here, but I still want to be here,” freshman Jori Hanna said.