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November 18, 2008 3:11 am

Decision to not raise tuition the right one

Written by Tribune Staff

Last week's announcement that the University of Wyoming doesn't plan to increase resident tuition for the upcoming academic year was good news to many Wyoming families.

UW currently is ranked in the top 1 percent of public institutions in terms of affordability of resident tuition — university officials should be commended for recognizing the importance of keeping tuition low.

With only one four-year college in the state, it's important that the school be accessible to the state's residents — and that a college education continue to be attainable. Low tuition, combined with the Hathaway Scholarship program, has made the dream of higher education a reality for an increasing number of Wyoming high school graduates.

The university's commitment to affordable education is paying off in higher enrollment numbers. In fact, this year's freshman class at UW is the largest ever — with more in-state students than usual, despite decreasing high-school enrollment numbers statewide.

State leaders' theory is that educating Wyoming students in Wyoming will pay off when graduates remain and build a life in Wyoming. During an economic time when the budgets of nearly all Wyoming families are feeling serious stress, holding firm to the commitment of affordable college education for our graduates is the right move.