Oakland University faces $400,000 fine after tuition hike


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Here's a first: Two Michigan universities may have to pay money out of their own pockets after raising the cost of attendance. 

Last fall, Oakland University opened the 2015-2016 school year by increasing student tuition by a rate of 8.48 percent, exceeding the state of Michigan's suggested tuition hike limit of 3.2 percent per year.

Violating this cap means that Oakland University forfeited about $1.2 million in funds that would have otherwise been awarded by the state, though the tuition hike ultimately raised the school an additional $12 million. Officials for Oakland U. say that the raise was justified because state aid doesn't take into account factors that are unique from school to school, such as increases in student enrollment and changes in faculty. 

Eastern Michigan University made a similar decision, raising their tuition by a rate of 7.8 percent for the same year.

According to The Detroit News, on June 1, members of a Senate-House panel decided to impose a $400,000 penalty on both Oakland U. and EMU for the tuition increase. The $800,000 raised from this will be distributed among four other Michigan schools: Western Michigan University, Michigan State University, Wayne State University, and the University of Michigan, each of which are currently behind in funding.