Regents to vote on reciprocity

by Jessica Burke

Wisconsin students who want to attend the University’s Law School or College of Pharmacy will pay the same tuition as Minnesota students if the Board of Regents approves a reciprocity agreement this week.
The tuition reciprocity agreement is one of the issues the regents will tackle this week in their monthly meetings. Other issues include an update on tenure, a look at the University’s professional studies programs and a vote on the 1996-97 budget.
Jim Infante, senior vice president for Academic Affairs, said the University began working with Wisconsin on the tuition reciprocity proposal a year ago.
Infante was going to bring the issue to the board earlier, but negotiations took longer than expected. Because Wisconsin tuition is significantly lower than Minnesota’s, the State of Wisconsin Higher Education Aid Board was hesitant to accept the proposal.
“The people in Wisconsin didn’t want to move,” Infante said.
As the tuition reciprocity agreement between the two states currently stands, when Wisconsin students come to the University or Minnesota students go to Wisconsin, the students pay the same tuition as they would in their home state.
Infante said it is embarrassing to have students from Wisconsin sitting next to Minnesota students who are paying 20 percent to 25 percent more for the same classes.
The Faculty, Staff and Student Affairs committee will hear the proposed reciprocity agreement and vote on it Thursday.
If the full board approves the proposal Friday, Wisconsin students entering the College of Pharmacy beginning this fall will pay the Minnesota tuition rate. Wisconsin students entering the Law School will begin paying Minnesota tuition in fall 1997.
Wisconsin residents currently in either of the two programs will continue to pay Wisconsin tuition.
The board will vote Friday on the University’s 1996-97 budget proposal.
Several regents held an open forum on the budget proposal April 25 for students, faculty and staff. About 40 people attended the forum and 10 people spoke about their concerns.
The proposed budget includes a 7.5 percent tuition revenue increase for the University. A tuition revenue increase means students may see a large or small increase in their actual tuition, depending on the number of credits they take, their college and year in school.
The proposed budget also includes new fees for several colleges across the University.
General College, the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs, and the colleges of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, Liberal Arts and Biological Sciences are all instituting new technology fees. The schools of Nursing and Dentistry are instituting other fees.