WMU News

Room and board, rental rate changes tabled

June 1, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- Increases in operating costs are expected to prompt a corresponding rise in room and board and apartment rental rates for 2001-02 at Western Michigan University.

The proposed increase, tabled today by the WMU Board of Trustees until its June meeting, averages 8.8 percent for room and board and 6 percent for apartment rental rates. Following discussion during a committee meeting, trustees requested that University administrators review the proposed room and board rates for residence halls. It was agreed that the proposal would be reviewed before final presentation at the trustees' June meeting.

"The new rates will allow us to absorb expected increases in our operating costs, including compensation, facilities insurance, steeply rising utility costs, food and extensive maintenance," said Dr. Theresa A. Powell, vice president for student affairs. The increases also reflect the cost of renovating and updating the dining facility that services Bigelow, Henry and Hoekje residence halls.

The proposed cost to live and eat in a residence hall for the 2001-02 academic year is $5,025 for 10 meals per week, a difference of $468 from the current rates. Rates for students with fifteen- and 20-meal plans are proposed to rise by $373 and $444 per academic year, respectively. Officials also propose that room and board rates rise by $105 for spring semester and $93 for the summer semester for those using the 15-meal plan, and by $56 for the spring semester and $44 for the summer semester for those on the 10-meal plan. The 20-meal plan is offered only during the academic year.

The proposed apartment rental rates range from $467 per month for a one-bedroom, unfurnished apartment in Goldsworth Valley to $717 for a two-bedroom, furnished unit in the Elmwood Apartments.

WMU has a residence hall capacity of 6,180 students, and officials expect to begin the 2001-02 academic year with full occupancy. In 2000-01, the University housed a record number of first year students-approximately 200 more than in previous years. The 585 on-campus student apartments for student families, graduate students and non-traditional students operate throughout the year at 95 to 99 percent capacity.

Media contact: Jessica English, 616 387-8400, jessica.english@wmich.edu

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