Tuition Increases will continue, diversity efforts geared to replicating population of Orange County, Struppa reveals

Chapman’s main focus for 2018-2023 is the Fowler School of Engineering, according to Struppa. Photo by Tiffany Chen.

Tuition increases will continue apace, and while Chapman may admit more Hispanic/ Latino students, it is unlikely that the percentage of African American students at Chapman will increase much, Chapman President Daniele Struppa said Friday.

“Tuition will continue to increase each year” and “the money will go into the university’s operational plans and financial aid for students,” Struppa said in an interview with Prowl following his Feb. 22 State of the University Address.

In 2018, the tuition rose by 4.5 percent. It is planned to jump 4.2 percent in 2019 and increase another 4.0 percent in each of the subsequent four years according to the Strategic Plan for Chapman University.

Racial and ethnic minorities were likely to make uneven progress in terms of future student body representation, Struppa said, appearing to set benchmarks based on the racial composition of Orange County.

“The majority of the student population is still white, but given the location Chapman is in, that’s not really odd,” Struppa said. “My goal is to bring our university anywhere between 20-30 percent Latino. The African American population on the other hand, is about 1 percent in Orange County, so I don’t expect to see the numbers to grow much more.”

According to information provided to Prowl last fall by the Office of Admissions, 17.07 percent of students in the 2018 fall undergraduate class identify as Latino, and 1.64 percent as African American. In numbers, that means 1,108 undergraduates identify as Hispanic/ Latino and 122 identify as African-American out of 7,281 undergraduates , according to the Chapman website.

The Orange County Healthier Together Institute shows that in Orange County 56.1 percent is white,1.86 percent African-American, and 34.5 percent Hispanic or Latino of any race.

Chapman will increase money allocated to scholarships as it increases tuition, Struppa said. In 2019, the university will spend $128 million dollars on scholarships, and expects to spend  $145 million on scholarships by 2021, according to the Chapman University’s Net Tuition Summary. By 2022, the university plans to increase funding in scholarships to $154 million, with the goal of reaching $164 million dollars in 2023. The amount spent on scholarships will increase from 37.2 percent to 37.7 percent by 2023.  

Responding to complaints from liberal arts majors that the school has devoted more resources to STEM fields at the expense of the humanities, Struppa said the university is responding to demands of the job market, but is not ignoring the humanities.

“We are focusing on STEM now, but the school has done a lot in the social sciences departments too. For example, we just created the new Smith Institute with a $15 million  infusion,” Struppa said. “Right now, there is a tremendous need for physicians and pharmacists to fulfill new jobs in the industry, that’s why we went in the direction we did. Californians import engineers from the rest of the country because we have so many jobs for engineering (and) we can’t fill them.”

And why isn’t the costly new Keck Center of Science and Engineering, which houses the bio-sciences, LEED certified?

“I think Keck is environmentally very advanced, but we may not have done the LEED certifications due to the costs of doing the certification vs. the cost of doing what the certifications require,” Struppa said.

Tiffany Chen

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