By Reid Forgrave
Enquirer staff writer
OXFORD - Students' on-campus living costs here will jump by $600 next year after the Miami University's board of trustees voted to raise room and board rates for the 2005-2006 school year.
The annual cost of room and board for most first-year students, currently set at $7,010, will increase to $7,610 next year - an 8.5 percent increase.
The trustees' vote, which took place Friday, came early in the school year so students have time to budget for next year.
"We do it now so current students can investigate early whether they want to live on campus or off campus next year," said university spokeswoman Holly Wissing.
The rate increase will be used to fund future maintenance projects and safety enhancements in Miami University's 36 residence halls, university officials said.
Many of the school's residence halls were built in the 1950s and 1960s, although some date as far back as 1829. The aging buildings constantly need upgrades, from new heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems to new data and technology services, such as wireless Internet.
No state aid or tuition money is used for the university's housing and dining operation, school officials said. It's funded through its own revenues.
Individual room and board costs vary depending on which housing options and meal plans students choose.
The $7,610 fee is for a student living in a double room and choosing the 21-meal plan. That total drops to $5,340 for a student who picks a cheaper meal plan and falls under Miami policy that allows students to freeze room-and-board rates after four semesters in a row in on-campus housing.
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