Regents approve tuition, fees increase for fall

An increase in tuition and fees, a project proposal for an in-house CDL driver school and emergency management were among the topics discussed during the March meeting of the South Plains College Board of Regents.

Dr. Robin Satterwhite, president, proposed a $10 fee increase per semester hour for out-of-district students, a $5 fee increase for instructional support for the Lubbock, Plainview and Reese campuses, and a $5 increase for internet support fees for online courses.

“It makes the decision harder to go to one of those campuses of convenience,” Dr. Satterwhite said.

Tuition and fees for students who attend SPC satellite campuses will increase by $10, beginning in fall of 2018. This increase will generate $560,090 in revenue.

Dr. Satterwhite said, “As we’ve expanded our presence to Lubbock, Reese, and Plainview, we see many students choosing a convenient location to go to school. We need to start moving towards a tiered tuition plan for these students who choose to go to our other sites.”

Dr. Satterwhite also presented to the Regents a proposal for charging a flat $50 tuition rate for students enrolled in high school articulated credit career and technical education courses who wish to receive transcripted CTE dual credit equivalents. High school students who are currently enrolled in CTE courses taught by high school faculty receive credit for these courses after they enroll at SPC and complete 12 credit hours.

The $50 tuition rate would be a yearly rate that would allow a student to take an unlimited number of CTE credit hours offered at the high school.

Dr. Ryan Gibbs,vice president for academic affairs, discussed the project proposal for an In-House Driver School for truck driving training.

“This program is a five-week program with a total of 55 students, which is on the conservative end for one year to go through the two courses,” Dr. Gibbs said. “There is cost involved, because it’s something we’d take in-house. But we feel like the return would be one that would be beneficial.”

He recommended that SPC continue to lease the runways at Reese and utilize the office space and classrooms where the previous program operated.

“This is something we feel like, as an institution, it’s our duty to provide this type of training, not only for the students but for the workforce needs,” Dr. Gibbs explained. “It makes the most sense to bring it in house and do it ourselves. And if we can build it to the size we feel we could get it too, which would be 85 to 100 students, it would become very profitable for the institution.”

Dr. Stan DeMerritt, vice president for student affairs, discussed SPC’s Emergency Management Plan. On Feb. 28, Governor Greg Abbott sent a letter to the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board calling for immediate action to address and ensure the safety of Texas’ college campuses following the recent tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

Dr. DeMerritt also mentioned the on-going ALICE Training that is being conducted by Chief Nickolis Castillo. Currently, 189 employees have completed the training. In order for the college to become certified, 427 employees must complete the ALICE program, according to Dr. DeMerritt.

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