UMass president recommends tuition freeze for UMass system

If approved, it would be the second consecutive tuition freeze

Judith+Gibson-Okunieff+%2F+Daily+Collegian

Judith Gibson-Okunieff / Daily Collegian

By Irina Costache, Assistant News Editor

In his annual State of the University address on March 16 – one year after the University of Massachusetts formally transitioned to online learning and work – UMass President Marty Meehan said he would recommend that the Board of Trustees freeze tuition for in-state undergraduate students for the next academic year.

A tuition freeze would mean that tuition would not increase next year compared to the current tuition rate, as has been common at UMass. If his recommendation is approved by the Board of Trustees, this would be the second consecutive year of a tuition freeze at UMass.

In his address, Meehan cited the pandemic as reason for the freeze, saying the proposal is meant to “lessen the financial burden on our students and their families, many of whom have suffered from job losses, business closures and other impacts of the COVID-19 crisis.” He thanked the passage of the American Rescue Plan and Massachusetts state house leaders for support in making the recommendation possible.

There appears to be support from Board of Trustees for a tuition freeze. According to a press release announcing the recommendation, Board of Trustees Chairman Robert Manning commented that “The Board shares [Meehan’s] concern, and also knows that the skilled management of [the] University by President Meehan and our five chancellors makes this freeze possible.”

According to the press release, “UMass awarded $971 million in federal, state, institutional and other financial aid in FY20.”

The next Board of Trustees meeting will take place on April 14 at 10 a.m.

Irina Costache can be reached at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter @irinaacostache.