We're obviously just as interested as the next school in saving money, but there's an obvious need for us to provide resources that the students wouldn't otherwise be able to afford. we're currently implementing a desktop virtualization strategy using VMWare's VDI solution in order to drive down our hardware costs. the current plan is to run the existing desktops into the ground, and replace them with thin clients as they expire. the extra flexibility this affords us is really compelling.
obviously, I wasn't present for the discussions at UVa, but this does strike me as being rather ill considered. As expensive as tuition is at large, prestigious places like that, passing a (possibly enormous) extra cost directly on to the students like that seems more than a little petty.