Concordia University St. Paul slashes $10K from tuition

Concordia University in St. Paul announced Wednesday, Sept. 12, that it will cut undergraduate tuition by $10,000 to $19,700 starting for the 2013-2014 school year.

“In resetting our tuition to a price last seen a decade ago, we are responding to the concerns of students and families who feel our nation’s colleges have become unaffordable,” the Rev. Tom Ries, president of Concordia, said. “We hope that other private colleges and universities will soon be able to follow our lead.”

Concordia freshman Jamie Fleischhacker said paying less for school will be a major financial relief.

“I feel really relieved that I don’t have to pay as much in loans. The cut’s a lot of money,” Fleischhacker said. “(My friends) all feel the same way. It’s nice that we’re going to school for cheaper, but still getting a good education.”

Because the university is reducing grants and scholarships as part of this tuition cut, Concordia senior Ashley Kluever said she does not feel like she will be missing out on a good deal after graduation.

“I’m not upset since scholarships are getting cut anyway, so people are pretty much going to be paying the same amount anyway,” Kluever said.

Doug Hennes, vice president for university and government relations, said there has been no discussion about this kind of cut at St. Thomas.

“No decisions will be made on tuition rates for next school year, for 2013-14, until February,” Hennes said. “But at this point, it’s safe to say tuition cuts of that nature, we don’t see that they’re on the horizon at this point.”

St. Thomas freshman Stephanie Berg said a decrease in tuition would positively impact the university.

“If you were to knock that initial number down, you’ll have a lot more prospective students. The more people that you have applying, the higher the standards.”

St. Thomas senior Aaron Rawleigh said he thinks a tuition cut at St. Thomas would be difficult to implement.

“It might be kind of hard (for St. Thomas) with the new facilities that they’ve opened. They would have to cut back somewhere… You would probably see a lot less student activities out in the quad.”

Hennes said financial aid is an important component in helping St. Thomas students pay for their education.

“We expect to raise $130 million dollars for financial aid programs as part of the (Opening Doors Capital) campaign,” Hennes said. “That’s money that goes to provide scholarships and grants to the St. Thomas students. Students also can obtain state and federal grants, they can obtain work-study awards and they can obtain loans.”