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Williams Freezes Tuition

By Marla B. Kaplan, Crimson Staff Writer

Tuition, room and board, and other expenses for the 2000-01 academic year at Williams College will remain at this year's level, as the school achieves something no highly competitive colleges have done in the recent past.

According to Jim Kolesar, director of public affairs at Williams College, the board of trustees announced next year's tuition last week, having decided that the college's current financial situation made it possible to keep tuition constant.

"Our financial position seemed to allow us to hold the fee level constant and to maintain the level and ambition of programs, as well as to maintain need-blind admissions," Kolesar said.

A year's expenses at Williams College, including room and board, currently total $31,520, $2,830 less than Harvard's $34,350.

In the past, Williams has followed the trend set by other highly competitive educational institutions, annually raising tuition by anywhere from three and a half percent to more than five percent.

Kolesar said regardless of the tuition freeze, the number of applications is expected to remain constant.

"Families that are interested in highly selective schools are not very responsive to differences in tuition," he said. "It takes several thousands of dollars to make a difference."

The lack of tuition increase will help both students with and without financial aid.

Students paying tuition in full will be spared the usual fee hike, and students receiving financial aid or on the federal work-study program will continue to receive the same benefits based on their financial situation.

Kolesar emphasized that the recent decision was based solely on Williams College's current financial situation, partly due to the strong stock market, and that he expects tuition to rise again as usual the following year.

Harvard's tuition for the upcoming year is usually released in late Feb., and tuition is expected to rise as usual.

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