MSU Raises Tuition, Trustees Squabble

Jun 21, 2017

The MSU Board of Trustees voted to raise tuition this morning, in a meeting that also saw an unusual flurry of interpersonal criticism between members.

In-state freshmen and sophomores will pay an additional $13.25 per credit hour in the fall. That’s an increase of 2.8 percent. For in-state juniors and seniors, there’s a bigger hike: 3.8-percent, or an extra $19.75 per hour. Tuition will go up by an extra $50 to $55 dollars for each credit hour.

In order to help incoming students, MSU is starting a program called “Go Green, Go 15.” The idea is to encourage freshmen to take 15 credits per semester. President Lou Anna Simon says getting off to that kind of ambitious start will create academic momentum and save money in the long run.

Lorenzo Santavicca is the undergraduate student body president at MSU. He points to state funding as the major reason for tuition hikes in Michigan.

After passing the tuition hikes, the atmosphere between Trustees got tense over recent comments made by Mitch Lyons on a radio show about the sexual assault cases facing several former Spartan football players. Trustee Brian Mosallam, like Lyons a former MSU football player, went public with his criticism of Lyons for mentioning the name of Auston Robertson as the athlete who alerted head coach Mark Dantonio to a possible assault involving teammates. Robertson is  facing an assault charge in connection with an unrelated case, and Lyons has said that he had momentarily confused the Robertson case with the allegations against Joshua King, Demetric Vance and Donnie Corley Junior. During his remarks, Mosallam called on Lyons for clarification.

Before he could respond, Trustee Dianne Byrum joined Mosallam with comments aimed at Lyons.

When Lyons finally spoke, he reiterated his confusion during the interview and said that as the father of daughters, he understands the importance of protecting sexual assault victims.

After the meeting, President Simon simply said that the board has a resolve to move forward with an agenda against campus sexual assault.