FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The University of Arkansas at Fayetteville says it will offer reduced out-of-state tuition to qualifying first-year students beginning next year.

The reduction is part of the university’s Extended States award program, The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (http://bit.ly/2cZLvLp ) reports. Suzanne McCray, the university’s vice provost for enrollment and dean of admissions, says the program’s goal is not to expand, but diversify, next year’s freshman class.

“We’re going to move slowly, so I don’t think you’ll see a striking difference in where students are from next year,” McCray said. “But I think over the next three or four years, we’ll see a shift.”

More than 4,800 undergraduate students at the university last fall had Texas as their legal residence. Other students came were from California, Florida and Georgia.

“We’re very much eager to be an institution that draws from across the country,” McCray said.

The university already offers tuition award grants to students from nearby states, and this fall, over 1,000 freshmen received the award out of degree-seeking class of 4,967. That program will not be changed.

Preliminary numbers show that Arkansas residents made up 49 percent of this fall’s incoming class of 4,967 first-time, degree-seeking freshmen.

The university’s recent rapid enrollment growth has been fueled by out-of-state students. Chancellor Joe Steinmetz has said universities rely on tuition dollars from increased enrollment during a time of declining state funding support.


Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, http://www.arkansasonline.com