Value Drives Fall 2018 Textbook Rental, Room and Board Rates at Southeast

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The tradition of offering a quality, affordable education at Southeast Missouri State University will continue for students in fall 2018.

The Southeast Missouri State University Board of Regents today reinforced the value of the University’s long-standing textbook rental system while setting the textbook rental rate at just $35 per course for fall 2018. The program offers students a convenient, economic benefit to make their educational dreams achievable.

Dr. Debbie Below, vice president for enrollment management and student success, said the University’s textbook rental system is a financial incentive for Southeast undergraduate students and represents a “scholarship” for every student. Southeast is home to one of few colleges and universities that has boasted a textbook rental system for decades. With the average cost of books and supplies at a four-year university at $1,250 annually, Southeast is pleased to offer this value in which students pay only $175 a semester for textbooks for a 15-hour course load, she said.

Meanwhile, the average combined room and board rate increase will stay well below the Consumer Price Index, inching up just 1.69 percent in 2018-2019. The Regents announced that students will pay just $10 a month more across all Southeast’s residence halls in fall 2018, as the Board underscored its commitment to contain student costs.

“The new rate schedule reflects an effort to hold room rate increases to a minimum,” Below reiterated.

She outlined plans for the University in the coming year to upgrade the wireless network used by students in every Southeast residence hall. This includes installing more than 500 replacement and more than 500 new wireless access points to significantly increase wireless coverage. In addition, 59 new building switches and new campus core switch technology will be installed, bringing each building’s connection speed to 10 gigabytes – amounting to 10 times the current capacity. Projected cost of the upgrade is $927,470 and is expected to be completed in April 2019.

“It is critical our network provide the speeds and coverage demanded by today’s students,” said Floyd Davenport, assistant vice president for information technology at Southeast. “Students pretty much live online. They get information, entertainment and build relationships all online. Connectivity and access to online educational resources is critical to student success. Our new wireless network will provide much greater coverage, compatibility with new devices and higher access speeds to serve our student body.”

In addition to improvements to the wireless network, Below said billing statements will be simplified beginning in fall 2018 with one room rate being listed rather than separate line items for several related Residence Life amenities.

She added that the 2018-2019 board rate is consistent with terms of the University’s dining contract with Chartwells Educational Dining Services and that several enhancements to dining facilities are planned in fiscal 2019. These include a complete renovation of the University Center kitchen and a minor upgrade of the Chick-fil-A venue in the Redhawks Market.

The full FY19 room and board rate schedule is available at http://www.semo.edu/pdf/reslife-academic-rates.pdf.

Regents also set the per credit hour rate for dual credit, dual enrollment and early college credit at $95 effective with the fall 2018 semester. With tremendous growth in these programs, Kathy Mangels, vice president for finance and administration, said Southeast’s dual credit program is currently working towards accreditation by the National Alliance for Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships and anticipates receiving confirmation by the end of the spring 2018 semester.

Dual credit has become an increasingly popular program at Southeast Missouri State University over the past five years, with the program seeing a 127 percent increase in total unduplicated enrollment since fall 2012.