A couple weeks ago, I blogged about how University of Iowa (ranked #26 in the US News) was considering a student-backed proposal to cut out-of-state tuition costs. In what can only be described as an early Christmas miracle, it appears that U of Iowa has not just agreed to the proposed out-of-state tuition cuts, they’ve actually lowered in state tuition as well.
The board of regents rejected the initial proposal from the law school, and decided to give the same 16.4% tuition reduction to in-state students. This all adds up to a $7,750 a year cut for nonresident students to $39,500, and $4,309 cut for resident students, to $21,965. (Source: U Iowa)
Now, I know that’s not a huge cut. This is about like hearing that Ferraris have come down in price. They still carry a price tag that is going to put a lot of potential buyers out of the market. However, what is worth celebrating is the direction of movement: In the last several years, almost every law school has actually increased tuition despite falling demand from potential law students. Only a couple schools have actually cut tuition, and U of Iowa is now the first relatively high ranking school to do so.
This move deserves a standing ovation from the legal community. Hopefully, this will set off a wave of good old fashioned price competition among law schools. One of the regents, Larry McKibben, gave other law schools something to ponder when he said, “Why do we shop on Black Friday? Because the prices are decreased…I hope this encourages our Iowa students to come to the University of Iowa.” (The Daily Iowan)
The other thing to note here is that the students’ association played a key role in getting this proposal in front of the decision makers. Law students everywhere should take notice. You can get together and haggle for a lower price. Bring your big scissors.