CSU students remain number one priority during state budget cuts
Cleveland State University President Ronald M. Berkman has announced the creation of the "President’s Opportunity Award” to help students impacted by cuts to the Ohio College Opportunity Grant (OCOG) program. A $224 million reduction statewide to the OCOG program will affect 1,450 students at Cleveland State University alone. OCOG funds provide assistance to the most financially at-risk students.
Said Dr. Berkman, “Most of our students need as much financial assistance as possible. A high percentage of them are the first members of their families to attend college, and many are older than traditional college students, are supporting families of their own, and work full- or part-time. It is our goal to support these dedicated students, and we will be creative and thoughtful in seeking out ways to raise money to keep them at CSU.”
CSU has agreed to not raise its Fall tuition, even though the state lifted its tuition freeze on public colleges and universities and authorized them to increase tuition up to 3.5 percent. Drastically reduced revenue from taxes and other income sources forced the state to trim $170 million from the subsidy of four-year colleges and universities in addition to the reductions in the OCOG program.
Cleveland State will allocate $600,000 toward the President’s Opportunity Award fund to assist CSU first-time freshmen students impacted by the OCOG cuts. Future funding to support students who will no longer qualify for the full OCOG award is expected to come from private donations. Under the revised state plan, the average CSU student receiving OCOG will experience a reduction of 60 percent in his or her grant for Fall 2009 and Spring 2010 semesters. Many CSU freshmen will see their OCOG grant drop from the previous maximum of $2,496 to $1,008.
“At all times and under all circumstances, we remain committed to providing the highest quality education at the lowest possible cost to our students. This is our number one priority. With steadily increasing enrollment and first-class student services in our Campus411 and financial aid offices, we will continue to work personally with students during these most difficult times,” added President Berkman.
Cleveland State remains among the most affordable universities in Ohio; tuition at CSU remains at its 2006 rates. Continuing this Fall, tuition for full-time undergraduate Ohio-resident students will remain $7,920 for the academic year or $3,960 per semester. Fall tuition for full-time graduate students is $11,420.50 for the academic year or $5,710.25 per semester. Fall tuition for full-time law students is $16,477.50 for the academic year or $8,238.75 per semester.
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