LONG BEACH (AP) — Applications to California State University jumped 5 percent for the fall 2012 semester, but admissions are increasing only nominally as the system faces continuing budget cuts, the university said Monday.
CSU said in a statement that funding constraints have forced the 23-campus system to admit just 1,163 more students despite the increase in demand from 35,000 more applicants.
“The CSU is caught between a huge demand to attend our universities and a state that simply is not providing adequate funding for these students,” Eric Forbes, assistant vice chancellor, said. “We are facing a tipping point in terms of promise of access that is at the heart of the CSU mission.”
For fall 2012, CSU received a total of nearly 743,000 applications, and admitted nearly 350,000 students. Of that number, the university expects about 106,000 students to enroll — 50,000 freshmen and 56,000 transfers, about 95 percent of them California residents.
The number of first-time freshmen applicants soared by 10 percent as families are looking for affordable higher education. The number of transfer students, many from community colleges, rose a modest 1 percent.
Admissions are poised to drop drastically next year.
CSU, which serves about 427,000 students, could lose $250 million in state funding if voters do not approve tax increases in November.
The university already plans to close most enrollment for spring 2013, a move that will affect about 16,000 students, and is wait-listing students for fall 2013 admission until the funding picture clears after the November election.
The university system has already lost nearly $1 billion in state funds, which resulted in a tuition hike of 9 percent for this fall, employee furloughs and layoffs, and no faculty salary raises.
The University of California is in similar fiscal straits and is considering a 6 percent tuition hike for the next academic year. If it is approved, tuition will have almost doubled in five years for the 10-campus system.
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