Supplemental funding provided by the Maine Legislature and Governor Mills will allow Maine’s public universities to hold in-state tuition flat for the seventh time in a decade, and many Maine students will have their tuition and fees fully covered
Augusta, Maine — Maine students attending the state’s public universities will see no tuition increase next year and many will be able to attend without paying out-of-pocket for tuition and fees.
On Wednesday afternoon, Governor Janet Mills signed a supplemental state budget passed the day before by the Maine Legislature that provides $7.9 million in one-time funding to offset in-state undergraduate and graduate tuition increases planned for the 2022–23 academic year.
Thanks to strong fiscal management by University of Maine System (UMS) leaders and state support, it will be the seventh time in a decade the state’s public universities will keep in-state tuition flat.
The System has become a national leader in college access and affordability, with tuition as a percentage of Maine’s per capita income decreasing each year since FY13. Eligible Maine students at four UMS universities — University of Maine at Augusta, University of Maine at Fort Kent (UMFK), University of Maine at Machias and University of Maine at Presque Isle (UMPI) — pay zero out-of-pocket for tuition and fees, and the R1-designated University of Maine is the most affordable flagship research university in New England.
“Maine’s public universities are more affordable than ever before, and the high-quality education and research learning they provide is the most proven path to social mobility and a great-paying career in the Maine workforce,” said UMS Chancellor Dannel Malloy. “We thank the Legislature and Governor Mills for their investment in our students, which will yield a strong return for their futures, and that of Maine’s employers and economy.”
UMS students applauded the additional appropriation, which will save those enrolled full time in 2022–23 up to $582.
“The cost of everything has been going up these days,” Nicole Caddell, a student from Bridgewater who is enrolled in UMFK’s nursing program offered at UMPI, told the Legislature’s Appropriations Committee last month. “By providing the university funding so that it can keep tuition priced the same next year, it will make it easier for me to stay in school so I can complete my nursing degree and not have to take out student loans that would be difficult to pay back working here in the County.”
The enacted state supplemental budget, which had strong bipartisan support, also includes necessary investments to modernize the System’s aging infrastructure without burdening students, and expand university research and development that directly grows Maine’s economy.
About the University of Maine System
Established in 1968, the University of Maine System (UMS) unites seven Maine’s distinctive public universities, comprising 10 campuses and numerous centers, in the common purpose of providing quality higher education while delivering on its traditional tripartite mission of teaching, research, and public service.
In 2020 UMS became the first and only statewide enterprise of public higher education in the country to transition to a unified accreditation for the system. Much different than a merger or consolidation, unified accreditation is a new operating model for the University of Maine System that removes the primary barrier to inter-institutional collaboration.
A comprehensive public institution of higher education, UMS serves more than 30,000 students annually and is supported by the efforts of more than 2,000 full-time and part-time faculty, more than 3,000 regular full-time and part-time staff, and a complement of part-time temporary (adjunct) faculty.
Reaching more than 500,000 people annually through educational and cultural offerings, the University of Maine System also benefits from more than two-thirds of its alumni population residing within the state; more than 123,000 individuals.
The System consists of seven main campuses: The University of Maine (UMaine), including its regional campus the University of Maine at Machias (UMM); the University of Maine at Augusta (UMA); the University of Maine at Farmington (UMF); the University of Maine at Fort Kent (UMFK), the University of Maine at Presque Isle (UMPI); and the University of Southern Maine (USM). The System also includes a UMA campus in Bangor, USM campuses in Gorham and Lewiston-Auburn, the University of Maine School of Law, and the University of Maine Graduate and Professional Center.