The University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents Thursday approved waiving electronic application fees at UW Oshkosh and nine other universities for approximately the next two years.
The no-cost EApp will save undergraduate students $25 per application, providing them economic relief amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. It also is estimated that the fee waiver will lead to increased applications at UW System universities.
“We are absolutely delighted by this decision, which further validates our commitment to removing barriers to higher education,” said Aggie Hanni, UWO’s assistant vice chancellor for enrollment management. “The impact of this advancement alone would be significant under normal circumstances, but today, it will be elevated even further by the current financial hardships faced by so many in our communities.”
The new policy takes effect immediately at all UW System universities except UW-Eau Claire, UW-La Crosse, and UW-Madison, although those universities would be able to waive fees if students meet financial hardship criteria.
The Board of Regents vote comes after numerous universities waived fees this fall and recognized an increase in the number of applications. Initial data suggests that fee waiver campaigns have led to an increase in the number of students applying to a UW System university and the overall number of applications submitted:
New freshman applicants so far for fall 2021 have risen to 60,670 from 54,592 at this point last year.
Applications are at 91,415 now versus 69,217 last year at this time.
For fall 2020, 9,486 students applied to two or more UW universities; this year 13,662 students have applied to two or more universities.
At UW Oshkosh, new applicants so far for fall 2021 have risen to 5,809 from 3,590 at this point last year.