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by Vault Education Editors | June 30, 2009

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Amidst all of the turmoil surrounding paying for college these days, many schools are trying to keep their tuition somewhat stable. Yeshiva University, for example, has imposed a tuition freeze for the school year starting in fall 2009.

And the good news doesn't end there. Nationally, tuition and fees for the 2009-2010 academic year will only increase by 4.3 percent, on average--the smallest increase since 1972. The National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities published the statistic yesterday, and the press release was met with sighs of relief across the country.

In their coverage of the NAICU report, The New York Times cites the tuition increases--and decreases--of a number of schools. When considering the 4.3 percent increase, it's important to remember that it is a national average, and colleges and universities are dealing with their financial woes in a number of different ways. At the Olin College of Engineering, for example, the tuition rise was more than 10 times the national average, for the most part because it started much lower. Until now, Olin has been a tuition-free school (much like Cooper Union in N.Y.C.), providing full-tuition scholarships for its entire student body. This year, Olin has cut its scholarships in half--in other words, increasing the cost to students by 50 percent. Luckily, the college will continue to offer the half-tuition merit scholarships to all its students, as well as provide financial aid of up to 100 percent to all students who qualify. So while the school is no longer tuition-free, it remains affordable.

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