CSM Trustees Approve FY21 Budget, Freeze Tuition, Waive Online Fees

The College of Southern Maryland Board of Trustees at its June 18 meeting approved the college’s Fiscal Year 2021 (FY21) budget of $60,556,232, which reflects an 8.6 percent decrease from FY 2020 based on projected tuition, and approved funding by the state and by Calvert, Charles and St. Mary’s counties’ boards of county commissioners.

In approving the budget, the trustees held tuition and course fees at 2019 levels. Tuition for residents of Calvert, Charles and St. Mary’s counties will remain at $131 per credit, and the combined fee remains at 25 percent of tuition. All online/web course fees have been waived for the year.

CSM’s operating budget is supported by funding from the state, the three counties within Southern Maryland, and tuition and fees. Approximately, 33 percent of this budget is tuition and fees, 31 percent county appropriations, 29 percent state appropriations and 7 percent from other sources. Those percentages may change as CSM learns more about the economic impact of COVID-19.

“The reality is we do not really know yet what the financial impact of the pandemic will be on our students or our institution,” said CSM President Dr. Maureen Murphy. “The state of Maryland and our three counties have kept us mostly whole in their budgets, but they may have to do mid-year adjustments, if tax revenues don’t materialize. Likewise, our enrollment is uncertain.”

CSM leadership began taking steps to prepare for a dip in the budget when it announced in April it was bracing for the hardships created by the COVID-19 pandemic. At that time, CSM instituted a soft hiring freeze; offered employees with 20 years or more of service a voluntary separation incentive; and offered all employees a voluntary workload reduction. Those actions are still underway.

“I suspect we will be making mid-year budget adjustments, depending upon state and county allocations and enrollment,” Murphy added. “We remain committed to helping students find ways to complete their education at CSM. We have several initiatives underway to assist with retention and will be announcing additional financial support for students in the near future.”

Students may participate in CSM’s Tuition Payment Plan that allows tuition and fees be paid over four months. Since this is a deferred payment plan, there is no debt, no credit search and no interest. There is a non-refundable enrollment fee of $50 per semester. For information on the payment plan, contact the Bursar’s Office at paymentplan@csmd.edu or 301-934-7712. To enroll in the plan, visit https://www.csmd.edu/costs-aid/credit-costs-aid/tuition-and-fees/Tuition-Payment-Plan/.

Various resources are available for students regarding financial aid, grants, loans, veterans benefits or student employment. For information on financial assistance and the types of aid available to attend college, please visit http://www.csmd.edu/costs-aid/credit-costs-aid/scholarships-financial-aid/.

Additionally, the college offers an online application that helps students to easily identify and apply for potential scholarships. The CSM Scholarship Finder is a quick, easy and free service that helps Southern Maryland students match their backgrounds and financial needs against more than 200 scholarships in a wide variety of academic programs. Every student must submit their FAFSA in order to apply for scholarships. To learn more, visit online at http://www.csmd.edu/costs-aid/credit-costs-aid/scholarships-financial-aid/scholarships/scholarship-finder/.

For information on scholarships and financial aid assistance at CSM, call 301-934-7531 or visit https://www.csmd.edu/costs-aid/credit-costs-aid/scholarships-financial-aid/.