Students discuss tuition changes in open forum

Megan Robinson, Staff Writer

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The Columbia College Student Government Association sponsored an open forum for students to learn about the tuition reboot coming next fall.

“Now that we have lowered the overall price of tuition, real dollars will go a lot farther,” Kyle R. Carter, Ph.D., executive vice president, said. “All of the federal, state and philanthropic funds will not be affected during this process. Some institutional scholarships will go away because they act like coupons and won’t be needed with our price decreasing.”

Work-study eligibility and study abroad programs were two important questions on students’ list.

“I planned to do Washington Semester next year, and I wanted to know if that would still be available to students because, if not, I might reconsider where I attend next year,” Shannon Leery, sophomore communication studies major, said.

Carter emphasized the importance of consulting financial aid counselors assigned to students because they will have to make those determinations. Overall, study abroad programs won’t be affected because students pay tuition for Columbia College and it is equaled out, Carter said.

Program prioritization was a topic many students did not expect to hear about during the forum. The financial status of the college has caused the college’s administration to analyze current programs and find a way to balance student life and budget cuts.

“For the past five or six years, the college has been taking in less money than it needs to operate. Often, we have had to take from revenues to balance expenditures we make during the year,” Carter said. “It’s possible we won’t have some of the programs we have now, next year.”

Areas Carter listed as being analyzed were the athletic programs, administration and academic programs. Every program has been enlisted to create reports that will ultimately lead to recommendations for the college’s board of directors. Sixty reports will be released from academics, while student affairs will release seven to eight reports.

“All reports will be finished by early November and will be sent to the board for approval,” Carter said. “We hope to let students know by the first part of December. This process is multi-staged and will take time.”

Blurb:

Programs potentially affected Programs that won’t be affected
Academic programs/majors (“If a program is phased out, we will help the student complete the program,” Carter said.) Teaching fellows (“Won’t be affected but     there are so many individual situations.  No will be disadvantaged,” Carter said.)
Dorms (Francis Schodowski, vice president of advancement, is looking for donors for renovations to dorms)     Life Scholarship
Faculty (“Faculty will be placed elsewhere on campus or we will help them find another place,” Carter said.) On-campus jobs
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