UA student's reaction to lawsuit against ABOR on tuition increas - Tucson News Now

UA student's reaction to lawsuit against ABOR on tuition increases

Lawsuit (Source: Tucson News Now) Lawsuit (Source: Tucson News Now)
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

University of Arizona students have been on the receiving end of a 370 percent increase in in-state tuition over the last 15 years according to Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich. 

As it stands a semester at the college costs more than $12,000. 

One student Tucson News Now spoke with said she had no choice but to face the reality of some major debt as she pursues her goals. 

"It has been my dream school ever since I was like five years old," said Annette Cortes, who is just three weeks into her first semester at the University of Arizona. 

Like any other freshman, she's getting used to her new life on campus and her classes. But following her dreams of becoming a pediatrician has come with a hefty price tag. 

"I'm still going to do it but $23,000 a year? I was like, that is incredible," said Cortes. 

After taking out loans and receiving grants, Cortes is still working a part time job on campus before or after classes to make ends meet. And even that's barely enough. 

"It's non stop," she said. "I just go straight into work and then I get out at 8:30 and even though I'm like dead tired, I still need to go finish the topics I have for math." 

Even with the long days, giving up is not an option for this first generation college student, but Cortes says she's not sure why it has to be this way.

"When did pursuing your education and your career become a symbol for debt?" 

That's the same question behind Brnovich's lawsuit against the Arizona Board of Regents. 

[READ MORE: Arizona AG sues state university system over tuition hike]

"We want to get the regents into court and to have them explain why tuition is not nearly as free as possible, as the constitution requires," said Brnovich.  

The lawsuit states the governing body of the three public universities in this state "dramatically and unconstitutionally" increased in-state tuition and mandatory fees. Anywhere between 315 to 370 percent in the last 15 years, much higher than the national average of about 100 percent.. 

"We're not saying what that amount of tuition should be," said the AZ Attorney General. "What we are saying is that the factors and criteria that the Board of Regents, what they are using to come up with that formula to set tuition here in Arizona is unconstitutional." 

Abor Complaint Final by Tucson News Now on Scribd

Brnovich says the issue of how the regents sets tuition came up while taking on the issue of in state tuition for DACA recipients. 

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