Regents approve Kaler’s request to freeze undergraduate tuition

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The University of Minnesota Board of Regents approved President Eric Kaler’s biennial budget request for the academic years 2014 and 2015 today, including the the offer to freeze undergraduate tuition for two years if the state commits an additional $14.2 million each year.

The freeze would save the average undergraduate student more than $2,500 over four years, according to Kaler’s presentation.

“President Kaler’s budget reflects a new tone, a new commitment and a new conversation, and I think all three are welcome,” said Regent Laura Brod before voting, “[The budget] focuses on transparency and openness in a way that is really positive.”

The budget also includes plans to reduce operating costs and set aside $11.5 million from the state’s appropriation if the University completes a series of goals.

Goals include increasing financial aid and four and six year graduation rates, as well as awarding at least 15,000 degrees in 2014.

The budget request will go before the state Legislature during the next session, which will begin in January.