USC Increases Undergraduate Tuition by 5 Percent

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LOS ANGELES—The University of Southern California (USC) will raise undergraduate tuition by 5 percent for the upcoming school year, marking its largest cost hike since 2009. Meanwhile, the University of California (UC) system will also increase its tuition for the first time since 2017 due to inflation.

USC raised undergraduate tuition by 5 percent—an estimate of $3,000 per student from the previous year for the 2022–2023 school year. Comparably, the tuition was only raised by 2 percent in the 2021–2022 academic year.

“The USC Board of Trustees has approved a 5 percent increase in undergraduate tuition for the 2022-23 academic year. The tuition increase is necessary due to both the magnitude of the financial impact of COVID-19 and persistent inflationary pressures facing our economy,” a university statement reads.

The 2022–2023 estimated cost of attendance for those who take 12–18 units each semester is over $85,000, with over $63,000 accounted for tuition.

For students who live with parents and save up the housing cost, the estimated cost of attendance is over $75,000.

New students will need to pay an additional $450 in the first semester, according to USC’s undergraduate admission office.

“Tuition is the largest source of the university’s academic operating budget, which pays for teaching, student services, facilities and administrative support. USC has long kept tuition increases below 5 percent; the last tuition increase of that size was in 2009 coming out of the Great Recession,” the statement reads.

In the past 10 years, USC has increased its undergraduate tuition by approximately $20,000 as the tuition was only around $44,000 in the 2012–2013 academic year.

In addition, the UC Board of Regents also approved a five-year tuition increase plan last year. The plan will increase the tuition for 2022–2023 incoming undergraduates by over 4 percent to $13,000—a $500 rise from the year before.

The university will keep the tuition fees at the same level for each continuing student at their initial entering rate for six years, according to the plan.

In the next five years, new undergraduates will face a tuition increase of inflation and a surcharge fee. The projected yearly tuition for incoming undergraduates in 2026–27 is $15,078.

Sandy Fang, a senior studying business administration at USC, said that tuition cost is a major factor when students decide where to attend school and go with the most affordable one.

“USC raises its tuition every year. I received some school grants. I would say USC is affordable to me and it is definitely worth the experience,” said Fang.

Fatima Irshad, a first-year graduate student at USC, said that the tuition increase will not turn away qualified undergraduates, as undergraduates can always apply for financial aid from the federal or state government.

“The undergraduates have more financial help from schools. For example, like the federal government, they always give some sort of stipend or some educational support as undergraduates more than graduate students,” Irshad told The Epoch Times.

Alice Sun

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