With the annual increases in tuition at LSU coupled with the rising interest rate for student loans, obviously, the students and their parents could use some help with paying for the cost of getting an education at LSU.
The fact that the LSU Board of Supervisors (“LSU BOS”) get choice tickets to all the athletic events and have a private suite in Tiger Stadium is fairly well-know. However, those are small potatoes when it comes to their perks.
Tyler Bridges just exposed a previously largely-unknown perk enjoyed by the LSU BOS and the President of the LSU System. See story here.
Each of the 16 members of the LSU BOS (including the student member) plus the president can, annually or each semester, give 20 tuition breaks to students at LSU. (BOS Report here!)
These breaks have been available since at least the 1960s. That was a shock to me because I had to work and borrow money to pay for undergraduate and law school at LSU.
Source of the funds
This perk can amount to over $300,000 per year per board member if used for out-of-state undergraduates.
LSU does not have some special dedicated source of revenues in order to offer these tuition break. The funds for these scholarships ultimately come from our tax dollars and tuition. If they weren’t given out, LSU would have more funds to spend educating the students and would not have to raise tuition as much because Bobby Jindal and the leges cut its funding.
In other words, this perk is not a “free lunch.”
Quid pro quo?
The awarding of these scholarships raises the question of potential quid pro quos for the elected official on the board as well as the business people who may want to reward their good customers or clients.
A couple of the members of the LSU BOS are prominent bankers. It makes one wonder if when students come to their respective banks to apply for a student loan whether they tell them that there is no need to borrow so much money because they can simply ask the BOS members for a tuition break.
Who should apply
Most undergraduates attending LSU-BR are qualified for TOPS and thus this break is not applicable. However, if one attends the LSU medical, dental, veterinary, law, graduate schools or is an undergraduate from out of state or country this break is extremely important.
These scholarships are NOT need based.
How to get started
The most important thing to do is to contact a member of the LSU BOS to ask them give you one of their scholarships. See list of member here.
Kudos to Tyler for bringing this to our attention. I’m sure a lot of LSU students and future LSU students appreciate this information.
Follow me on Twitter: @CBForgot