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University of California regents on Thursday lifted a six-year freeze on tuition, approving a 2.5% increase beginning this fall in order to pay for more faculty, classes and student services.

The vote was 16-4, and many of the regents expressed regret about having to raise costs for students.

But UC President Janet Napolitano told regents an increase was needed to ensure that the renowned public research university system delivers the same top-notch education today as in the past even as it grapples with escalating enrollment demands and reduced state support.

The regents voted to raise tuition to $11,502 for the 2017-18 school year — a 2.5%, or $282, increase. The student services fee would increase by $54 to $1,128. The action marked UC’s first tuition increase since the 2010-2011 school year.

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