The Buzz

June 20, 2014

USC tuition rising by 3.2% next year

The Buzz

A blog from The State's political team of Cassie Cope, Jamie Self and Andy Shain. Email tips to thebuzz@thestate.com.

The University of South Carolina will raise tuition by 3.2 percent next year, roughly the same annual hike as the two previous years.

In-state students will pay $11,158 next year, up $342, while out-of-state students will pay to $29,440, an extra $912 over this past year. Tuition at the state's flagship university has nearly tripled since 2000 with state funding cuts.

The four other S.C. public colleges that have announced tuition changes for next year have raised rates by 2.4 percent to 3.2 percent.

USC tried to halt tuition hikes this year.

School leaders asked S.C. lawmakers to provide $10.1 million and money to cover state-mandated salary and health insurance hikes in exchange for keeping student costs steady. The General Assembly did not approve the school's proposal.

USC's tuition hike will add $9.5 million to the Columbia campus' coffers to help pay for most of higher salary, health insurance, retirement and building maintenance costs.

The 3.2 percent rate hike covers all USC campuses except Beaufort, where tuition will rise by 4.8 percent next year as the school finishes its elevation as a four-year college.

Tuition on the Columbia campus is no longer the highest among public colleges in the Southeastern Conference, USC officials told trustees. Kentucky and Tennessee have passed USC.

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