The Northwest State Community College Board of Trustees voted to increase tuition to $142 per credit hour at its Friday, March 30 meeting.
The increase is 4.4% over the old tuition rate of $136 per credit hour.
Mari Yoder, NSCC vice president for institutional advancement, said the increase will cost a full-time student less than $200 per year.
She said most NSCC students are not full-time. For them, the increase will be less than $100 per year.
Yoder said under the State of Ohio tuition cap, NSCC could have raised tuition as high as $144 per credit hour, but instead chose to contain the hike to $142.
Yoder said NSCC administrative staff has discussed the increase for some time.
Tuition payments and the subsidy money the college receives from the State of Ohio “is not enough to develop new programs and also provide services students need for tutoring, advising, and placement testing,” she said.
Michelle O’Dell, coordinator of public relations and marketing, said NSCC currently has about 5,000 students spread across its various programs. Enrollment, she said, has reached a plateau after growth of around 20% in the previous few years.
One new program NSCC is creating is welding.
The welding program is in response to a new company coming to Hicksville, which is bringing 250 jobs. Some will need training.
O’Dell said the program will be about 16 weeks, to get people back to work quickly.
She said the program will probably start this summer. Currently, NSCC staff is putting together the curriculum, finding instructors, and purchasing equipment.
Another program noted by Yoder is alternative energy.
“We’re constantly adding new equipment” to that course, she said.
O’Dell said there are other engineer-related programs being developed.
NSCC tuition had been $136 per credit hour until December 2009, when the board of trustees voted to reduce tuition by 3.8% to $131 per credit hour.
Tuition remained at the $131 level until April 1, 2011, when the board voted to rescind the tuition reduction program. College offi- cials said at the time, state subsidy payments weren’t enough to continue the discount program.
Still A Value
Yoder said even with the tuition increase, Northwest State remains a solid value in the education marketplace.
She noted tuition at fouryear universities is higher than at community colleges, and private colleges and universities are even higher.
‘The college is working very hard to control costs,” Yoder said.
For example, in the NSCC bookstore, Yoder said the price of textbooks is marked up 15%.
College bookstores generally mark up textbook prices at least 35%, she said.