Our View: As tuition rises, so does value of an ASU Havasu education

April 2, 2019

Attending college in Lake Havasu City will get a little more expensive next year, but it’s a bigger value than ever. The Arizona Board of Regents announced last week that tuition at all Arizona universities was going to rise next year. That includes Havasu’s Arizona State University campus.

Fortunately, even a tuition of $7,032 is still just 60 percent of what students at ASU’s Tempe campus will pay, and the discount is even deeper for nonresident students. Affordability is a heck of a marketing point when it comes to attracting potential students.

That said, ASU Havasu is still finding its way five years after it opened in the old Daytona Middle School campus. The university got a slower-than-expected start, but encouraging signs of growth and maturity are starting to emerge. The campus hit 100 graduates last spring, and is set to graduate its largest class ever in just a couple of months. It has launched innovative new programs, such as the outdoor pursuits program and a tourism degree, in addition to a fledgling teacher program.

All of these should help broaden the school’s appeal to prospective students.

ASU could really boost the appeal of regional campuses like Havasu’s if it decentralized some of its important programs, offering unique majors in growing fields of study. It’s true that tourism and teaching are vitally important industries in Lake Havasu City, but just imagine how a research program in a STEM field might transform the idea of a Havasu education. We’re crossing our fingers we’ll soon see some announcements regarding ASU’s involvement in a planned environmental learning center.

Wishful thinking aside, growth is happening at the Havasu campus to be sure. Campus officials say ASU Havasu should start seeing larger admission numbers as soon as this fall. That’s important, because the school plays a large role in Lake Havasu City’s vision of improving educational attainment and shutting down the regional brain drain. A growing campus gets us closer to those goals.

— Today’s News-Herald