UTHSC Adopts Tuition Reductions for Out-of-State Students for Certain Programs

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The University of Tennessee Health Science Center has adopted tuition reductions for out-of-state students in some of its programs for the coming academic year.

Out-of-state students at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center will see reduced tuition rates for the coming academic year in the Colleges of Pharmacy and Graduate Health Sciences, as well as for the Dental Hygiene program in the College of Dentistry.

At the same time, the UTHSC College of Nursing has reduced tuition for both in-state and out-of-state students in its Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) and certificate programs, reclassifying them as online offerings and bringing their cost in line with other similar online programs across the country. These advanced practice programs have historically been primarily online with periodic on-campus seminar work.

The University of Tennessee Board of Trustees approved these significant reductions at its most recent meeting. They are effective with the new academic year, which begins July 1.

In proposing them to the board, UTHSC leaders said the reductions will not affect qualified Tennessee applicants, but are expected to increase out-of-state enrollment to offset any revenue losses.

Wendy Likes, PhD, DNSc, APRN-Bc, FAANP, dean of the College of Nursing, said the tuition reduction will allow the College of Nursing to attract more high-quality students, particularly from states contiguous to Tennessee, to its Top 25 ranked DNP program.

The College of Nursing’s DNP program has been ranked in the top 25 among colleges with DNP programs in the country for the past two years by U.S. News & World Report. It is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education through December 31, 2024.

With seven program concentrations and two dual-degree concentrations, the College of Nursing’s DNP program is one of the largest producers of advanced practice DNPs in the country.

The UTHSC College of Pharmacy currently ranks as No. 17, according to U.S. News & World Report and is in the Top 20 in NIH funding among 140 colleges of pharmacy in the country. Now, out-of-state students will pay approximately $27,000, instead of more than $40,000.

“I grew up with limited resources, so I am keenly aware of the stress students face from the cost of education in this country,” said Marie Chisholm-Burns, PharmD, MPH, MBA, FCCP, FASHP, FAST, dean of the College of Pharmacy. “I vowed that if ever I was in a position to influence the cost of education for students, I would do my very best to help.”

Dean Chisholm-Burns pointed out that the tuition reduction does not require additional money from the state. “Thus, we are not placing a burden on the taxpayers of Tennessee.”

In the College of Dentistry, out-of-state tuition for the Dental Hygiene program has been reduced 40 percent.

“This is something we’ve been hoping for,” said Lynn Russell, RDH, MEd, EdD, chair and graduate program coordinator for the Department of Dental Hygiene. “Being in a tri-state area, this is especially welcomed by students, who literally cross the river or the Mississippi state line to attend school here.”

In the College of Graduate Health Sciences, out-of-state tuition has been reduced significantly as well, from approximately $20,000 above in-state tuition to about $6,000 above in-state tuition.

The Board of Trustees approved a general $200 maintenance fee increase for the coming year for all graduate/professional programs at UTHSC. There will be no increases in tuition in any college beyond that. This is expected to generate $451,200 in new revenues. None of the undergraduate programs will see any increase for 2020.