Governor chimes in on University of Puerto Rico credit hike
SAN JUAN – Gov. Ricardo Rosselló said Tuesday that the course fee hikes at the University of Puerto Rico established in the fiscal plan the academic institution’s board of trustees approved Monday should be accompanied by a financial aid mechanism for people with limited resources so they may have access to the public university system, the cheapest on the island before the increase was approved.
The UPR must present its fiscal plan to the Financial Oversight & Management Board by Wednesday.
“Those who can pay, pay more, and those who can’t, assure them that they can go to the university. That is my suggestion…that a portion can be established to assure that those who are not in a position to pay, that it be made viable so they have zero impact; but those who can pay, that they pay for the credits,” the governor said in a press conference.
The president of the General Student Council of the UPR’s Río Piedras campus, Wilmarí De Jesús, said the institution’s credits “were doubled, both for master’s degrees and bachelor’s degrees, in clear detriment to the living conditions of each one of the families that make up the UPR.”
For the student leader, the increase will prevent educational access to thousands of Puerto Ricans, amid an economic crisis.
“Although this first phase of consolidation is administrative, the next step is to reconsider the UPR system’s current academic offer, and among the actions to be taken is the closure of academic programs that are repeated in campuses. This will close the space to a large number of students and will leave education sector employees in the streets,” De Jesús warned in a written statement.