UM-Dearborn budget affirms commitment to academic excellence, student success, access

June 29, 2020

Highlights of the fall financial plan include increased student aid, a new cost-savings tuition structure, and a $20M fund from U-M to support the Dearborn and Flint campuses.

A significant increased investment in financial aid, an enhanced focus on student success and a change in the tuition structure highlight University of Michigan-Dearborn’s fiscal year 2021 budget. The University of Michigan Board of Regents approved the plan June 29. 

The $158.3 million operating budget includes a 11.8 percent increase in 2020-2021 existing financial aid programs. With this increase, nearly 90 percent of the university’s state appropriation will go directly to students via financial aid. 

To align with the university commitment to student success, beginning with the upcoming fall semester, the university has restructured its tuition and fee structure to permit full-time undergraduate students to take 12 or more credit hours without paying additional tuition.

This “block tuition” structure will encourage undergraduate students to take increased course loads and graduate more quickly at a reduced tuition rate. Students who complete 15 credit hours per semester will be on track to graduate in four years, versus five or more years, with combined savings of more than $13,500 in tuition costs.

Tuition and fees for full-time, in-state, undergraduate students at UM-Dearborn will increase 1.9 percent or $124 per semester. Tuition and fees for one year of study at UM-Dearborn will total $13,552. The university will provide additional financial aid to ensure that all of the university’s Pell Grant eligible students see no net increase in tuition and fees. 

With the transition to the new tuition and fee model, current students, depending on their course load, may see various tuition percentage increases over the prior year. The university will provide all continuing undergraduate Michigan resident students with additional financial funding so they are only assessed the nominal net 1.9 percent increase in tuition and fees. Out-of-state undergraduate students will see a 4.2 percent tuition increase to $27,520.

The new tuition structure will not apply to UM-Dearborn graduate students. Tuition and fees will increase for graduate students by 5 percent. 

“The financial challenges surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic have forced the university to make very difficult decisions, we have worked hard to become more efficient and reduce expenses,” said Domenico Grasso, chancellor, UM-Dearborn. “With this in mind, we have recommended a modest tuition increase, the lowest increase necessary to maintain a high-quality Michigan education, support student success and adapt to the uncertainties.” 

The university will reduce the registration fee by $200 per semester, aligning fees with the resources and activities available to students, and forgo all parking fees during the 2020-2021 academic year. 

During the meeting, University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel announced he would make a $20 million fund available to be shared by the UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint campuses as “part of our ongoing commitment to our regional campuses to help them best serve their students and the state.” The funds will be devoted to student success initiatives identified by each chancellor and specific to each campus’s strategic priorities.

The Understanding Tuition area of the UM-Dearborn website has been updated to reflect the 2021 budget information.

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