Another university has fallen victim to Obamacare.

This time, it is its students who will suffer most.

University of South Carolina’s board of trustees has hiked tuition for the upcoming school year to help shoulder new health care and Obamacare implementation costs, expenses they say the public university can’t afford.

The increase of 3.2 percent – about $342 per student – will pay for state-mandated employee pay raises, health and retirement benefits, and Affordable Care Act implementation, campus leaders say.

Implementing Obamacare is estimated to cost the state’s flagship university up to $4.5 million.

“We are now at a critical tipping point,” university President Harris Pastides stated in a campus news release. “The current trajectory is no longer sustainable for our students, parents and taxpayers.”

Campus officials blamed what they called unfunded mandates for the financial crisis, or demands the state and federal government place on the university that come without providing enough cash to pay for those requirements.

“The state is only expected to cover a fraction of the pay increase and associated fringe and health insurance increases for employees,” campus officials stated in a budget breakdown published by The Times and Democrat. “ … The state also provides no funding for mandated increases in employer contribution to retirement or the expected increase due to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act.”

President Pastides told the Post and Courier no employees’ hours have been cut to offset the Obamacare employer mandate, which requires colleges to offer employees who work 30-plus hours a week health insurance or pay fines of up to $2,000-per-employee.

In response to the tuition increase, a spokesman for Republican Gov. Nikki Haley’s office told the Post and Courier it’s a “tragedy” the Affordable Care Act prompts financial hardships for students and schools.

Meanwhile, the University of South Carolina’s neighbors to the north are struggling with very similar woes, as leaders of North Carolina’s 17-campus UNC System are grappling with how to pay for unfunded health insurance mandates as well.

…“There’s no money provided to us or to state agencies to cover this cost,” said Charles Perusse, chief operating officer of the UNC System. “We’re just supposed to absorb it within our budget.”

North Carolina Agriculture and Technical State University’s Chancellor Harold Martin said schools may be forced to cut hours or jobs…..