No tuition increase for ETSU undergraduate, graduate students

Published 12:08 pm Thursday, April 28, 2022

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Undergraduate and graduate students attending East Tennessee State University this fall will not see an increase in tuition.
During its quarterly meeting, the ETSU Board of Trustees voted not to increase tuition and fees for the 2022-23 academic year. This decision applies to all in-state and out-of-state undergraduate students and graduate students, with the exception of those attending Gatton College of Pharmacy and Quillen College of Medicine. The Board also approved the 2022-23 operating budget, which goes into effect July 1.

Earlier during the Academic, Research and Student Success Committee meeting, members heard a project status report from the ETSU Ballad Health Strong BRAIN Institute. Later, during the full Board meeting, another update was made by the Center for Rural Health Research. Both centers were made possible through major gifts from Ballad Health.
The Board also approved a final report from the Committee for 125 Chapter II. Launched in March 2021, the Committee for 125 was charged with creating a strategic vision for ETSU to pursue in advance of its 125th anniversary in 2036. In addition to the core committee, six task forces were formed in the areas of academics, equity and inclusion, ETSU Health, student success and experience, research and scholarship, and fiscal sustainability.

Prior to the Board’s adoption of the final report, a number of town halls, listening sessions, focus groups and other meetings were held with various constituency groups and campus and community members to gather feedback and ideas. This new initiative is a “part two” of the first Committee for 125 strategic visioning process that was launched in 2012 upon President Brian Noland’s arrival at ETSU. Many of the recommendations from that first group have already been implemented.
“There has been a tremendous shift in the higher education landscape since that first report was completed,” Noland said. “For example, there was a major governance change following the FOCUS Act, which called for the creation of a local governing Board for ETSU.

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“In addition, new programs such as Tennessee Promise have also had a direct impact on enrollment, and new working partnerships have since been presented through the creation of Ballad Health. All of these and other events occurred prior to the pandemic, which also had a dramatic effect on this campus,” he added. “Collectively, these transformative changes provided the impetus for us to examine what new opportunities might be on the horizon for ETSU in the next decade.”

Noland said that with the board’s approval, ETSU will move toward implementation of multiple initiatives and activities outlined by the Committee for 125 Chapter II. These include establishing a comprehensive student support center that offers a full spectrum of services for students, particularly first-generation students, from point of application through career placement; creating a Center for Community Engagement that elevates the number of experiential learning opportunities for students; offering additional pathways for veterans, military-affiliated families, ROTC cadets and active duty servicemen; and expanding the Access ETSU program for neuro- and physically diverse students. Another goal for ETSU is to have 90% of its students participating in internships or real-world experiences within their majors.