July 17, 2024 Donate

Chelsea, Dexter, Saline

EMU Board of Regents Approves $317 Million General Fund Operating Budget

By Water Kraft 

The Eastern Michigan University Board of Regents today (June 20) approved a 2024-25 General Fund operating budget of $317 million. Revenues include $220 million in tuition and fees, $86.4 million in state appropriations, investment income of $4.7 million and $5.1 million in other revenue resources. Expenditures include $155.9 million in personnel costs, $63.1 million in University-sponsored financial aid, a net transfer budget of $53.9 million, and $44.1 million in services, supplies and materials, and other expenses.  

The University provides financial aid support to approximately 68% of its student population, and to about 90% of first-year students. This includes the University’s Eastern Tuition Advantage scholarship, which provides incoming students who have a 3.0 grade-point average and an annual household income of less than $60,000 with free undergraduate tuition. Qualifying students can receive free tuition for four years as long as they continue to meet the family financial requirements and fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) each year. Eastern is among the first universities in Michigan to offer free tuition to high-achieving students with financial needs. 

Several other scholarships exist, including the Presidential Scholarship, which covers full tuition and room and board, and the 4WARD Graduation Scholarship, which covers full tuition in years three and four for students who live in an on-campus community for all four years. Visit the University’s scholarship page to learn more about the range of financial aid available for first-year, transfer and graduate students.  

“Financial challenges impact all students,” said James Smith, president of Eastern Michigan University. “As the needs of our students and families grow, we must continue to support them. As the top-rated university in Michigan for social mobility, we proudly embrace our mission as an institution of opportunity and our commitment to financial aid reflects that priority.  

“We also are committing more resources than ever to update academic facilities and student-support initiatives. This August, we’ll celebrate the completion of the $200 million Welcome Home plan – including the opening of two new campus apartment buildings, Lakeview and Westview. Welcome Home also includes the renovation of nearly every other residence hall on campus with air conditioning, state-of-the-art Wi-Fi, and modern gathering spaces. Other campus updates in recent years include a new engineering and technology campus, science complex, and recreational/intramural facilities. The transformation taking place on Eastern’s campus is dramatic.”  

Under the budget, tuition for undergraduate students will increase $730 for students taking 30 credits (4.5%). (Under Eastern’s block tuition model, undergraduate students pay the same tuition and fee level when taking 12-16 credits per semester.) Tuition for doctoral and graduate programs will increase 3%.  

If there are changes in the assumptions used to develop the general fund budget when the State of Michigan budget is approved by the Legislature, tuition and fees may be adjusted to maintain a balanced budget. Any increase to tuition and fees will not exceed a tuition restraint cap the State of Michigan may impose. 

Since 1980, state appropriations have dramatically declined as a portion of EMU’s general fund budget. In 1980, state aid accounted for 72% percent of the University’s revenues to 28% percent from tuition and fees. Those percentages are now reversed. 

Rising costs for employee salaries, increased prices for goods and services, and continued investments in campus security, mental health resources and academic support services are included in the increase.  

The University’s Board of Regents also approved an auxiliary funds operating expenditure budget totaling $83 million for the 2024-25. Auxiliary activities include housing, food service and athletics operating costs, along with costs for other services.