Students Protest Tuition Hike

By: Deneige Broom Email
By: Deneige Broom Email

Tallahassee, FL -- April 4, 2012 --

Florida A&M is trying to fill an almost 20 million dollar budget gap.

The state budget awaiting the governor's signature is sending universities back to the drawing board.

Today was the first day of FAMU's Board of Trustees meeting this month. The first committee on the agenda was budget and finance. They're trying to make up for 19.8 million dollars they may not see.

Wayne King might not come back to FAMU next fall.

"If tuition goes up anymore I may have to go home."

More students throughout Florida could soon feel the same way.
State university budgets are expected to take a 300 million dollar hit.

Budget Committee Chairman Rufus Montgomery says, "We're working on things that were thrust upon us so ..."

Wednesday FAMU's Board of Trustees worked through ways to fill the hole.

One option would likely cost students 600 more dollars each year.

FAMU student Tiffany Brown adds, "I feel like it's a burden."

That concerns the athletic department too.
When tuition goes up --- it costs more to provide athletic scholarships.
They're already putting almost one million more dollars into scholarships now than in 2005.

And in a year when a boost in football ticket sales could help their bottom line --- the suspension of the Marching 100 could make that less likely..

FAMU student Phylicia Taylor says, "The marching 100 is the best part. The football team isn't that good. so we stay for the 100. If they're not there then what's the point?"

The Board of Trustees did say it would look into other forms of entertainment to try to still bring in a crowd. Trustees say the 20 million dollar cut is a one time deal and they should be able to get that money back next year.


Tallahassee, April 4, 2012

A group of high school students rallied in front of the steps of the Old Capitol Wednesday (4-4-12)

The students came from all over Leon County to protest House Bill 7129. The students say the bill increases tuition by 15 percent and state universities will no longer accept AP and dual enrollment courses for credit.

"It affects me as a senior because I'm going to college, it really does affect my decision of where to go. It also affects the kids that are in college right now because the tuition increase messes up their finances," Katelyn Biggins, a high school student.

The bill has passed the Senate and House. It now awaits Governor Scott's signature before it can become law.

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