Keystone College has reset its tuition price in an attempt to more accurately reflect what students actually pay for their education after factoring in scholarships and financial aid.
Starting in the 2020-21 academic year, tuition for new and returning full-time undergraduate students will total $14,500, a 39 percent decrease from $24,920 in the 2019-20 academic year.
Keystone plans to scale its scholarships and grants accordingly and continue to offer merit scholarships, but in a different model with lower discounts.
A strategic institutional advancement campaign being undertaken at the college may also increase funding for student scholarships.
The college estimates that the price of attendance for returning students in most cases next year will be equal to or slightly less than this year’s amount.
“Keystone has always been a leader among colleges in making higher education affordable to as many students as possible,” said Keystone President Dr. Tracy Brundage. “Our new tuition reset continues that tradition by helping take much of the confusion and guesswork out of the process.”
The college has also increased its comprehensive fee from $1,100 to $2,500 to cover all individual course fees. Housing and meal plan rates, as well as graduate tuition won’t change.
Keystone VP for Enrollment and Marketing Dr. Janine Becker said the college does not project any reduced revenue with this tuition price reset.
“Since institutional aid like scholarships and grants will be scaled along with tuition, the change in revenue will not be an issue,” Becker said. “We are anticipating additional interest in Keystone, which could actually bolster enrollment overall.”
Ninety-six percent of Keystone students receive financial aid, so the current tuition price rarely reflects what students pay once enrolled, according to the college.
The Keystone administration hopes to alleviate confusion for students and their families while promoting transparency.
“By resetting tuition, we are also resetting the baseline for future tuition increases should they become necessary,” Brundage said. “Over the long term, this new pricing strategy will make paying for college less complicated, more transparent, and more equitable for more of our students. That’s always been our objective and we feel we are once again taking a positive step in that direction.”
Colin Franko, a senior communications major at Keystone, called this change “great for the campus” and sees it as a potential enrollment increaser.
“There’s a lot of students at Keystone College already, especially with football being brought back, but I think will help the school become more competitive with other schools in the state and help more students and families afford to attend college,” he said.