USF Students Protest Tuition Hike

A group of students expressed their concerns about a 15 percent increase put in place this year.



USF Provost Ralph Wilcox talks with students concerned about tuition hikes at state universities. Photo credit: Aimee Blodgett | USF News


By Barbara Melendez

USF News


TAMPA, Fla. (Oct. 4, 2011) – A group of about 25 members of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) at the University of South Florida campus in Tampa marched today from Cooper Hall to the Patel Center to protest tuition hikes approved in June. 


USF Provost Ralph Wilcox spoke with the group when it arrived at the Patel Center. Dustin Ponder, a junior majoring in English, presented the group’s concerns and handed the Provost a petition requesting a student opinion poll. 


They agreed to further discussions about issues related to how both students and the university are coping with the depressed economy and budgetary constraints. They also will explore the funding process through  the Legislature and review recommendations.


The State University System Board of Governors and USF Board of Trustees authorized a tuition increase of seven percent on top of an increase of eight percent approved by the State Legislature in May.  The average full-time student’s tuition bill has risen approximately $600 a year. Tuition at Florida’s state universities ranks 48th in the nation behind Mississippi and ahead of Louisiana and Wyoming. 


In a statement, USF said: “USF, the State University System, and universities across the U.S. are experiencing the impact of the faltering economy and the increasing costs of obtaining a degree.  USF’s primary concern is maintaining access to students, helping students to progress to graduation, and increasing the value of their degrees.  It has always been our focus to provide a quality, world class education that our students and faculty have come to expect.”


Barbara Melendez can be reached at 813-974-4563.