Tuition rates increase put on hold, for now

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Four special programs will see an increase in tuition in the fall instead.

By Wally Perez

The full tuition and fee schedule in place now for spring will not change for the fall aside from four specialized programs.

The overall proposed tuition and fee schedule for the 2016-17 fiscal year was put on hold by the board of trustees during a special board meeting 6 p.m. March 28.

Diane Snyder, vice chancellor for finance and administration, said more time was necessary to figure out a way to best incentivize students to attend full-time if they’re able, in regards to the proposal.

If students attended full-time, then they would be able to finish their degrees or transfer at a quicker rate, she said.

Instead, the board voted to increase tuition for a few special programs.

These programs included Northwest Vista College’s digital video and cinema production, and digital media, as well as this college’s nursing and fire science programs.

Snyder’s proposal looks to increase those programs’ tuition costs.

“A few programs each year are analyzed; equipment and program costs are looked at,” Snyder said.

The digital video and cinema production and the digital media program costs will range from $60 to $240 and $60 to $180 respectively.

The nursing program changes included an increase in tuition for this college from $700 to $900, which Snyder said is needed to support the specialized faculty, plus the higher cost of program materials.

Fire science is increasing from $600 to $1,100, which will allow the college to supply all equipment and uniforms to students, rather than the students having to purchase them themselves, she said.

Certain programs are determined to be high cost, which means the program needs specialized faculty, equipment or facilities, she said.

These programs must be at least 150 percent higher than the average program cost; meaning students are paying special program tuition.

District 3 trustee Anna Bustamante asked Snyder why the significant increase was needed for Northwest Vista’s programs now, and not in the past.

Snyder said the digital media programs were previously funded by a federal grant through the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, which is no longer available, that was used to purchase equipment.


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