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University sets tuition rates, financial aid for 2020-21

March 2, 2020

The 2020-21 tuition rate for University of Rochester undergraduates in the College will increase by 3.9 percent over last year, to $57,188. Room and board will be $17,064, a 3.6 percent increase. With an increase in the cost of attendance comes additional financial aid that supports Arts, Sciences & Engineering undergraduates. Institutional financial aid is rising 4.6 percent over the current year to $153 million.

Tuition for Eastman School of Music undergraduates will increase 3.7 percent to $57,420.

After considering available revenue sources, as well as operating efficiencies, the University’s Board of Trustees approved the 2020-21 undergraduate and professional school tuition rates at a February meeting.

Undergraduate tuition background

Annually, the University determines the undergraduate tuition rate based on the projected financial needs of AS&E in the upcoming year, as well as the expected number of enrolled students. This formula does not change. Tuition increases are also a balance between the University’s ability to provide the best instructional experiences for students and keeping the cost affordable.

For 2020-21, undergraduate tuition will cover about 64 percent of AS&E expenses, which are projected to rise in cost by 5 percent in the coming year. Tuition dollars go to the programs, services, and facilities that benefit all AS&E undergraduates, regardless of whether students live on or off campus.

“We are continuing to implement new efficiencies in our operating costs that minimize tuition increases and keep the Rochester education accessible to low- and middle-income families,” said Donald Hall, the Robert L. and Mary L. Sproull Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Sciences & Engineering. “We need to remain a leader in academic programs and research opportunities, while simultaneously supporting the growing needs for important student services and experiences.”

Financial aid increase

This year, AS&E financial aid funding is rising by 4.6 percent to $153 million—from $146 million in 2019-20. This $153 million is in the form of institutional grants and scholarships. Overall, more than 82 percent of AS&E undergraduates receive financial aid, with the average need-based financial aid package being about $52,100 most recently in 2019-20.

In 2019-20, more than $377 million in total aid—the combination of federal/state/outside grants/scholarships/loans and University grants and scholarships—was awarded.

Tuition at the University’s professional schools

The Board of Trustees also approved the 2020-21 tuition rates at the University’s professional schools:

Simon Business School:

  • MBA: $48,000, a 2.1 percent increase
  • MS Finance: $81,750, a 3.2 percent increase
  • MS Accounting: $65,000, no change
  • MS Business Analytics and Marketing Analytics: $69,500, a 3.3 percent increase

School of Nursing’s three-semester accelerated program: $73,472, a 3.2 percent increase

Warner School of Education (per credit hour): $1,598, a 3.5 percent increase

School of Medicine and Dentistry (MD program): $61,500, a 4.1 percent increase

Net price, financial aid, cost of attendance and student debt

Much national attention is being given to the cost of higher education, while at the same time degrees from high-quality institutions are becoming even more important for graduates aiming to succeed and advance in their professional pursuits.  The AAU (Association of American Universities) is an organization which represents 65 leading American research universities, including all of the Ivy League schools and Rochester. AAU member schools are focused on making high-quality education affordable and accessible, and there are some interesting data points related to this:

  • AAU graduates annually carry student debt well below national averages, as well as higher average graduation rates than both nonprofit and for-profit institutions.
  • Students at AAU universities receive 46 percent more financial aid from their institutions than from the federal government and have far lower loan default rates than the national average.

As additional tools for comparison, students and families can view the University’s costs, financial aid and other institutional figures on the US Department of Education’s College Navigator website. The University’s Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships provides an online cost estimate calculator to help students and families plan for a degree program, and financial aid officers are available to meet with individuals to discuss their financial needs.


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