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MSU reduces hours to graduate, increases scholarships

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In an effort to reduce costs for students and improve value, Missouri State University yesterday announced it reduced the hours needed to graduate and increased scholarships.

With the action approved by the MSU Board of Governors, students now will be required to complete 120 hours of study, rather than the previous 125. Based on current tuition rates, that creates a savings of $1,000 or more, according to a news release.

MSU also is investing $1.5 million to increase the first-year value of some scholarships and boost the number of students who can receive them. The effort is expected to result in 750 more admitted freshmen being offered scholarships and another 450 getting increases in scholarship offers.

“We will continue to look for ways to make a higher education as affordable as possible to the largest number of students, even in the tough budget environment we are experiencing in Missouri,” MSU President Clif Smart said in the release.

Last year, Smart led a town hall meeting seeking to address budget shortfalls after Gov. Eric Greitens cut funding for higher education.

Other new initiatives include:
    •    freezing housing costs for three residence halls, affecting more than 1,300 students;
    •    lowering costs for meals; and
    •    decreasing textbook costs.

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