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Ypsilanti Schools accept transportation consolidation
By Adrienne Ziegler
Jun. 8, 2010   ·   3:07 p.m.

Connie Shelton, an East Middle School Teacher, speaks against the WISD transportation consolidation plan at Monday's special meeting of the Ypsilanti Board of Education. The board approved the motion to join the consolidation by a vote of 5 to 2.

"Shame on you" echoed through the audience Monday night after the Ypsilanti Public Schools Board of Education approved a plan to join a countywide consolidated...read more

Willow Run appoints new board member
By Adrienne Ziegler
Jun. 5, 2010   ·   8:16 a.m.

The Willow Run School Board looks on as Kristine Thomas, a district parent and previous board member, is sworn in as trustee on Thursday night. Thomas will take the position of Joi Jenson who resigned in early May.

The Willow Run School Board appointed a new, yet familiar trustee to the board of education during their regular meeting Thursday night.

Kristine Thomas, a Willow...read more

Willow Run approves county-wide transportation plan
By Adrienne Ziegler
May. 27, 2010   ·   2:09 p.m.

The Willow Run School District signed on to a countywide consolidated transportation plan at their regular board meeting last week.

The plan aims to save transportation...read more

Lincoln offers summer courses to area high-schoolers
By Mark Tower
May. 26, 2010   ·   7:49 p.m.

Students from Lincoln and other nearby districts are being invited to participate in Lincoln High School's Summer Academy this year, registration for which opened...read more

Willow Run terminates student services administrator
By Adrienne Ziegler
May. 26, 2010   ·   12:26 a.m.

Willow Run School Board President Sheri Washington said she didn't know if the district was going to press charges against former Student Services Administrator Laconda Hicks after the board fired Hicks during a special meeting Tuesday night.

The Willow Run Board of Education unanimously voted to terminate its contract with former Student Services Administrator Laconda Hicks Tuesday night during a special...read more

EMU students to see no cost increase next year

Photo by Dan DuChene

Eastern Michigan University holds a press conference immediately after its board of regents approved a 2010-11 budget with no increases to tuition, room or board.
Dr. Kimberly A. Rice DDS

Regents unanimously approve budget, assuming 3.4 enrollment increase

By Dan DuChene
Apr. 21, 2010    ·    8:13 a.m.

For the first time in at least 30 years, students at Eastern Michigan University will start school next year with no increases to tuition, room or board.

At their meeting Tuesday afternoon, the EMU Board of Regents unanimously passed three resolutions to adopt a $280.9 million budget for fiscal year 2010-2011 that keeps university housing, dining, tuition and fee costs at the same level as this year.

Regent Philip Incarnati was absent from the meeting.

Despite budgeting for a 3.1 percent decrease in revenue from the state, the budget is balanced by assuming a 3.4 percent increase in enrollment next year and cost-savings measures throughout the institution.

The budgeted enrollment increase would lead to a $5.9 million boost to revenue for EMU.

“This recommendation is a risk to our bottom line and credit rating at a time of declining state support,” University President Susan Martin said in her address to the regents Tuesday, “but a risk we must take to serve the public at this important time in the State’s future.”

The cost of tuition and fees is estimated at $8,377 a year for a full-time undergraduate student taking 15 credit-hours a semester. This does not include housing, food or book costs.

“Economic conditions faced by Michigan students and their families are challenging—the worst I’ve seen in my lifetime in Michigan,” Martin said. “This is the right recommendation, at the right time for EMU, for Michigan taxpayers and citizens.”

EMU saw a 5 percent increase in enrollment for the first time in six years this academic year. This lead to a $5 million budget surplus that will be rolled into next year's budget. Despite the history of declining enrollment, Martin said she and her administration are confident the recent increases will hold and continue into next year.

To help ensure the increase, the budget calls for a $1.4 million increase to financial aid, bringing the total in aid to $30.4 million. The university has increased financial aid by 42 percent, or $ 9 million, in the past three years.

“I'm very proud of Eastern for this,” Student Body President-elect Antonio Cosme said during a press conference held after the regents' meeting Tuesday.

“It's difficult to want to be a student and even stay in Michigan with this kind of economic climate,”
Cosme said. “I hope it's going to set a new precedent among universities to follow suite and maintain low tuition.”

Last year, EMU had the lowest tuition increase among the other 15 public universities in Michigan, at 3.8 percent.

Despite trying to keep tuition increases down, the university is still moving forward to multi-million dollar capital improvement projects to the university's most-used academic buildings thanks to funding from the state legislature and a 4 percent fee added to tuition by the regents in 2005.

A $42 million renovation project on EMU's largest classroom building, Pray-Harrold, is about to begin. Built in 1967, the building has not had any major modernization work since its construction. The work is being funded mostly through $31.5 million in state appropriations.

Ground broke on the Mark-Jefferson Science Complex expansion in Nov. 2008 and is continuing now. The self-funded $90 million project is the largest in university history.

Martin said she did not expect the impact these projects will have on the university, such as finding office and classroom space throughout campus, to negatively affect enrollment.

Related article:
Large projects in EMU's future

Ypsilanti Historical Society
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