University of Cumberlands is planning to cut tuition by 57 percent in the next academic year. (University of Cumberlands photo)

Cumberlands to slash tuition 57 percent in next academic year

WILLIAMSBURG, Ky. (KT) – The University of the Cumberlands announced Tuesday that tuition rates will be cut 57 percent for the next academic year.

Under the plan, known as “The Cumberlands Commitment,” tuition for on-campus, undergraduate students will be reduced from $23,000 to $9,875. The goal of the tuition cut is to increase the affordability of a private education at Cumberlands while offering more transparency in the financial aid process for students and families.

“We are making this change because we are committed to putting our students and families first by addressing the most significant hurdle to a college education, affordability,” said Cumberlands President Dr. Larry L. Cockrum. “We want all students to know that with Cumberlands there is a clear and affordable path to a college degree.”

Cockrum made the announcement to Cumberlands students, faculty, and staff, Tuesday morning. The initiative is a component of the University’s mission to serve students and families throughout the Appalachian Region. Currently, 82 percent of Cumberlands students come from Appalachia, 53 percent from Kentucky.

The tuition decrease means the total annual cost for undergrads will drop from $32,000 to $19,175, and the school said they will continue to maintain a scholarship system for academic, athletic and extracurricular awards.

“The Cumberlands Commitment we’re making today means that out of pocket costs will not increase for any of our students,” said Cockrum. “We will continue to work each and every day to make tuition affordable to anyone who has dreams of higher education and greater opportunity.

“As someone who speaks to students each day about college finances, including student loans and managing that debt beyond college, it is exciting to think of the opportunity our students and families have with this tuition reduction plan,” said Larry Rector, Director of Financial Aid. “From this point forward, this university can send college graduates into the world with the financial peace of mind not available to many of their peers.”

While cuts are being made to tuition, university officials said there will be no cuts in programs or services provided to students, and no reduction in faculty or staff.

“This university has done all the right things in recent years to make the student experience the best that it can be,” said Dr. Jerry Jackson, Vice-President for Enrollment. “We experienced growth this fall beyond our projections in undergraduate enrollment, and we have grown in that regard for the last five years. With a transparent pricing model that reduces tuition costs, we expect even more students to find Cumberlands the perfect fit for them.”

Located in Williamsburg, Ky., University of the Cumberlands is an institution of regional distinction offering quality undergraduate, graduate, doctoral, and online degree programs.

It was founded in 1888 by a group of Baptist Minsters as the Williamsburg Institute. In 1913, following the acquisition of Highland College, Cumberland College was born. It became the University of the Cumberlands in 2006, and currently has more than 10,000 students.