Written by Lyle Ahrens, Posted: Mon, June 4 2012 at 4:01 PM, Updated: Mon, June 4 2012 at 4:15 PM
The cost of higher education in Oregon will come at a higher cost this fall...
Students at Oregon Institute of Technology are bracing for a 7.2% tuition increase.
John Rydel is gearing up for a hike of around 450 dollars in his fall tuition...
"Could be fairly significant - especially with taking a lot of credits."
O.I.T. President Chris Maples says the increases are due to cuts in state funding. "Since July of 2009, we've taken a 33% hit - here, this last go-round, it's about a 16% hit."
Sophomore Tyler Park says he's not surprised by the increase...
"Everything - prices are going up - economy is bad, inflation - I figured it would have to go up by some extent."
Student Cynthia Higgins is one of those who say the 7% increase is too much. "I think it's a lot. Because students are trying to pay for college, and some students are the only ones that have to pay - for their parents aren't helping them."
President Maples notes that O.I.T. is one of five schools in Oregon cutting mandatory health service fees to help students compensate for the higher costs...
"For most students, insurance now is going to be an optional opportunity for them."
But for John Rydel, the bottom line is that it's going to cost more to get a diploma. "I'm coming back, no matter what. I'm going to finish my degree, so, do what we got to do."
The State Board of Higher Education approved the increases on Friday.
The cost for a year's tuition and fees at Oregon campuses range from a high of over $9300 at the University of Oregon, to a low of about $6800 at the Oregon State University 'Cascades Campus' in Bend.
KOTI-TV NBC2 reporter Lyle Ahrens moved from Nebraska to Klamath Falls in the late 1970's. He instantly fell in love with the mountains, the trees and the rivers, and never once regretted the move.
Lyle's job history is quite colorful. He’s managed a pizza parlor; he’s been a bartender, and a “kiwifruit grader” at an organic orchard in New Zealand. A Klamath Falls radio station hired Lyle in the mid 90's as a news writer and commercial producer. In 2004, Lyle joined the KOTI/KOBI news operation.
Lyle notes with pride that he has a big responsibility presenting the Klamath Basin to a wide and varied audience. "The on-going water crisis has underscored the fact that the people and the issues in the Klamath Basin are every bit as diverse as the terrain. Winning and keeping the trust of the viewers, as well as the newsmakers, is something I strive for with each story".
When he's not busy reporting the news, Lyle enjoys astronomy, playing guitar, fixing old radios and listening to anything by Sheryl Crow.