As Penn State, other schools increase tuition, PASSHE votes to freeze rates again

20 July 2023- The Board of Governors for Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) today voted unanimously to freeze tuition for an unprecedented fifth consecutive year and applauded the General Assembly and Governor Josh Shapiro for their strong support of State System students. 

With the decision, tuition for in-state undergraduate students – nearly 90% of whom are Pennsylvania residents – will be flat for six consecutive years (2018-19–2023-24). If tuition had kept pace with inflation since 2018, it would be 21% higher today. 

“Freezing tuition for a fifth consecutive year has been a major priority for the State System universities to best serve our 85,000 students – many of whom are from low- and middle-income families,” said Cynthia Shapira, chair of the Board of Governors. “Our students depend on PASSHE universities for a high-quality education at the lowest cost. 

“The State System is incredibly appreciative to the General Assembly and Governor Shapiro for their continued strong investment in PASSHE students and the state-owned, public universities that serve them. PASSHE was created to benefit Pennsylvania, and funding from the state is a lifeline for our students to have access to higher education.”

The state budget passed by the House and Senate would provide an increase of $33 million, or 6%, to PASSHE universities. With that level of investment, in the last two years the state has increased funding by $108 million, or nearly 23%, with PASSHE receiving $585.6 million in 2023-24, up from $477.5 million in 2021-22.

“PASSHE is proud of our partnership with the state, which helps Pennsylvania’s students get the education and skills for the most in-demand jobs at the lowest cost,” said Chancellor Dan Greenstein. “Higher education is changing, and State System universities are continuing to evolve to meet the new needs of students, employers and Pennsylvania’s economy. Together with the state, we are strengthening the pipeline of talented and skilled people from the classroom to the workforce and providing value to students as they gain the knowledge to build successful careers close to home.”

In addition to keeping in-state undergraduate tuition at $7,716 for a sixth year, PASSHE students will receive $125 million in university-funded financial aid to help them afford their education. The tuition freeze and aid are possible due to increased state funding and PASSHE universities saving $300 million through a commitment to cost efficiencies.