Tuition, fees, room and board set for 2009-10

Undergraduate tuition will be $37,800 for the 2009-10 academic year — a $1,600 (4.4 percent) increase over the 2008-09 current academic tuition of $36,200. The required student activity fee will total $378, and the student health fee will be no more than the current charge of $686. Barbara A. Feiner, vice chancellor for finance, made the announcement.

Charges for on-campus double-occupancy housing for 2009-10 will range between $7,656 and $8,466, depending on whether a student selects newer housing or not. This is an increase of 4.0 percent over the current year’s housing. The meal plans for 2009-10 will range from $3,396 to $4,648, a 3 percent increase from this year’s range of $3,296 to $4,512.

In a letter to parents and students about 2009-10 tuition, room, board, and fees, Edward S. Macias, Ph.D., provost, executive vice chancellor for academic affairs and the Barbara and David Thomas Distinguished Professor in Arts & Sciences, said the following:

“We begin this new calendar year in an era of financial uncertainty and doubt. Washington University is subject to global economic forces, but I am writing to reconfirm our commitment to providing the best undergraduate education possible and to assure you that the investment you are making in your children will pay dividends throughout their lifetimes. In announcing our tuition for 2009-10, I will share with you some of the things we are doing not only to continue the improvement of your child’s educational experience, but also to contain costs and improve efficiencies.

“We rely upon tuition and our other charges as a significant factor in providing the best quality learning experiences for all of our students. Tuition is the largest source of operating revenue for the University schools with undergraduate programs but covers less than two-thirds of the actual cost of educating a student, with the remaining coming from gifts, endowment income, and grants.

“In recognizing the financial pressures facing all of society, these increases are smaller than in previous years. On the other hand, they also reflect the realities that we are all facing. Since July 1, the value of our endowment has dropped approximately 25 percent. This decrease will result in less endowment spending in 2009-10. We have increased funds available to assist families that have experienced dramatic reversals in their own economic circumstances and now qualify for need-based financial aid. In addition to declines in endowment value and increases in financial need, we are seeing a leveling of research awards as well as uncertain expectations for future gift support.

“Across the University we have announced plans to control growth in compensation and other operating expenses, including energy usage. We also will be scaling back on capital projects, such as an indefinite delay on the renovation and expansion of the Mallinckrodt Center. Redevelopment of the South 40 student residence area will be slowed and new construction and renovation projects for our schools will require a much larger fraction of funds in hand before construction begins. The Chancellor already has announced a significant reduction in his own compensation, and academic and administrative leaders have volunteered to forgo salary increases for the next fiscal year.

“Beyond cost controls, the University must be mindful that some costs are beyond the institution’s control in what remains a highly competitive environment. Rising more rapidly than the consumer price index are such costs as: computer technology for instruction, administration and networking; library subscriptions and book purchases; upgrading and modernizing laboratories and classrooms; and significantly higher health care costs for all employees.

“Enhancements have been achieved, too. This fall we opened Harry and Susan Seigle Hall and William H. and Elizabeth Gray Danforth University Center, both of which have dramatically improved services and opportunities for undergraduates, such as the expanded Career Center now available to all students for career planning and job placement support. A building project currently underway on the Danforth Campus, Stephen F. and Camilla T. Brauer Hall, will be completed in late summer 2010. The facility will serve as home for the School of Engineering’s Department of Energy, Environmental & Chemical Engineering, provide space for the International Center for Advanced Renewable Energy & Sustainability (I-CARES), and share facilities with the University’s highly successful Department of Biomedical Engineering.”

About 60 percent of Washington University undergraduates receive financial aid in the form of scholarships, grants and other awards through the university’s strong financial assistance programs. Students who qualify for need-based financial assistance will receive consideration for these costs increases, along with consideration of changes in their family financial circumstances.

Feiner noted that the University offers payment plans to help lessen family financial burdens, including the Partners in Education with Parents (PEP) plan that allows University charges for all undergraduate years to be paid in monthly installments over as many as 10 years at competitive fixed interest rates. The advantage of this plan is that a family can decrease the effect of future tuition and room-and-board increases, depending on the level of participation the family chooses.

There is also a monthly payment plan that allows families to spread all or most of a single academic year’s expenses over 10 equal monthly payments without any interest charges.

Below are the 2009-10 full-time tuition and fee schedules for the Washington University graduate and professional programs, as well as tuition for evening and summer schools enrolling part-time students.

Graduate and professional tuition

Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, the Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Design, and graduate programs in the School of Engineering: The 2009-10 tuition charge for graduate students in these programs will be $37,800, an increase of $1,600 (4.4 percent) over the current charge of $36,200.

Graduate School of Art: The 2009-10 tuition charge for the Master of Fine Arts program will be $30,890, an increase of $1,390 (4.7 percent) over the current charge of $29,500.

Brown School of Social Work: The 2009-10 tuition charge for the Master of Social Work program will be $30,180, an increase of $1,290 (4.5 percent) over the current charge of $28,890.

School of Law: The 2009-10 tuition for the Juris Doctor program will be $41,670, an increase of $1,970 (5.0 percent) over the current charge of $39,700 and the LLM program at $41,850, an increase of $1,990 (5.0 percent) over the current charge of $39,860.

Olin Business School graduate program: The 2009-10 tuition for the Master of Business Administration program will be $42,525, an increase of $2,025 (5.0 percent) over the current charge of $40,500.

School of Medicine: Tuition for 2009-10 for the Doctor of Medicine degree will be set in March.

Evening and Summer School tuition rates, 2009-10

Undergraduate evening students: For undergraduate evening students enrolling in University College in Arts & Sciences or continuing education classes in the School of Architecture in 2009-10, tuition will be $515 per credit hour, compared with the 2008-09 cost of $495 per credit hour.

Graduate students in University College: Depending upon the graduate program in University College in Arts & Sciences, tuition ranges from $515 to $730 per credit hour for 2009-10 compared with the current range of $495 to $695.

Summer School in Arts & Sciences: Tuition in Summer School classes in Arts & Sciences will be $795 per undergraduate credit hour and $965 per graduate credit hour for summer 2009, compared with the 2008 Summer School rates of $765 and $915 per credit hour, respectively.