Tuition increases, faculty promotions go to regents next week

Tuition increases for next year and faculty promotion and tenure requests are on the agenda when the state Board of Regents meets April 11-12 at the Iowa School for the Deaf in Council Bluffs. Committee meetings are scheduled for Wednesday, with the full board convening Thursday. Audio of all public portions will be livestreamed on the board's website.

Tuition proposal

Delaying the discussion nearly five months due to uncertainty over state funding levels, the board will give a first look at a 3.8 percent tuition increase ($284 for the year) for Iowa State resident undergraduates and 4 percent for all others. A proposed 4 percent increase works out to $358 for resident graduates, $852 for nonresident undergraduates, $908 for nonresident graduates, $896 for resident veterinary medicine students (years 1-3) and $1,972 for nonresident veterinary medicine students (years 1-3). The board will vote on tuition increases at its June 7 meeting in Cedar Falls.

The 2019 fiscal year will be the final year of a three-phase, $542 annual tuition differential assessed all international students. Iowa State also will present a three-year plan to align its various differential tuitions into two levels: $1,600 (all students) and $2,612 ($3,026 nonresidents including international) annual differentials when fully implemented. Impacted programs will take from one to three years to get to the new rate. The intent is to assess higher education costs where they are needed rather than spread them across the entire student body.

The first rate will make the tuition differential uniform across the colleges of Human Sciences, Design, Liberal Arts and Sciences, and Agriculture and Life Sciences (excluding agriculture systems technology and industrial technology). Not all programs in these three colleges have differential tuition. The second rate will make the tuition differential uniform across the colleges of Engineering and Business and the two CALS programs. Differential tuitions, when applicable, would be applied after 60 credits, except for the College of Design. All Design studio-based majors (undergrad and graduate) would pay the differential except for first-year Core Design students.


Iowa State has forwarded to the board 81 requests for faculty promotion and tenure (see table below). This compares to 52 requests a year ago and 58 for 2016-17. If approved, the promotions become effective for the 2018-19 academic year.

ISU 2018-19 faculty tenure and promotion requests





Promotion with tenure




Promotion (already tenured)




Tenure without promotion








The list of promotions will be posted on the provost's website once the board has voted on the request.

Fourth-quarter budget reversion

The board will vote on how to distribute a $10.9 million funding reduction among regent entities in the current budget year. The board's proposal is 2.4 percent reductions to:

  • Iowa State, $5.4 million
  • University of Iowa, $5.5 million
  • Board office, $19,000
  • Iowa Public Radio, $8,600
  • Regents' three regional study centers (Council Bluffs, Sioux City and Moline, Illinois), $6,700

Language in the reversion bill prevents the board from reducing state funding for the University of Northern Iowa or the regents' K-12 schools serving sight- and hearing-impaired students.

Honorary degrees

Iowa State proposes to award an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters to Dwight Ink, holder of the first government degree (1947) from Iowa State, federal civil servant and adviser to seven U.S. presidents (Eisenhower to Reagan); and an honorary Doctor of Science to Jon Kinzenbaw, inventor, entrepreneur and CEO of Kinze Manufacturing, Williamsburg; at spring commencement. Iowa State proposes to award an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters to alumnus Theaster Gates, artist and professor of visual arts at the University of Chicago, at next fall's commencement.

The board also is scheduled to elect a president and president pro-tem, and approve residence, dining and parking permit rates for next year. Additionally, faculty and staff representatives from all the regent schools will provide input on salary policies for the budget year that begins July 1. Salary increase proposals typically are on the board's June agenda.

More ISU requests

In other business, Iowa State will seek board permission to:

  • Sell 68 acres of farmland immediately south of the ISU Research Park core facility to the park as part of its phase 3 development. Iowa State purchased the land about a year ago for $2.1 million; the research park would reimburse the university this same amount (determined from a December 2016 appraisal) as parcels are sold to future tenants.
  • Add several names to the new poultry farm on South State Avenue. The farm would be named for Robert Hamilton (deceased), formerly of rural Iowa Falls, whose spouse provided a lead gift of $3 million for the $5 million facility. The Hamiltons were successful poultry and hog farmers. The farm's layer hen facility would be named for the Iowa Egg Council, Urbandale, in recognition of a $1.5 million gift. The genetics research building would be named for Hy-Line North America, West Des Moines, in recognition of a $500,000 gift. Hy-Line is a genetics company that raises and sells laying chickens.
  • Increase the budget $500,000, to $2.9 million, and accept a revised description of a stand-alone dynamometer facility for farm vehicles at the Ag Engineering and Agronomy Farm, located south of U.S. Highway 30 west of Ames. Initially, this was planned for Sukup Hall. The increase is due to higher than expected dynamometer costs in vendor proposals. The dynamometer will be one of a few in the world capable of testing the engine force and torque on large tractors, combines and off-road vehicles.

Iowa State will make these requests to the board's academic and student affairs committee, with full board approval scheduled for June:

  • End the master of science in landscape architecture degree, due to low enrollment and student interest. It is research-based and requires a thesis. The department will continue its masters in landscape architecture (MLA), considered a terminal degree.
  • Add four degree programs: a cross-disciplinary Ph.D. in populations sciences in animal health, department of veterinary diagnostic and production animal medicine; M.S. in real estate development, colleges of Business and Design; B.S. program in actuarial science, Ivy College of Business; and B.S. in data science, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.