Richmond, VA _ The State Board for Community Colleges, by a unanimous vote, established the 2017-2018 academic year in-state tuition and mandatory fees rate at $150.25 per credit hour Thursday at its regular May meeting. Beginning this fall, in-state students will pay an additional $4.00 per credit hour, an increase of 2.7 percent – which means the cost of a typical three-hour class will increase by $12 and the cost of a full-time load of classes for the year will increase by $120.
The new rate keeps community college tuition and mandatory fees at approximately one-third of the comparable costs at Virginia’s public four-year universities.
Virginia’s Community Colleges will use the tuition increase to pay a share of the General Assembly-approved employee pay raise; rising fringe benefit costs; and costs associated with using various Virginia administrative systems. It will also pay for operating costs for new buildings.
“Our State Board remains sensitive to the need to ensure higher education is affordable for Virginia families,” said James Cuthbertson, chair of the Virginia State Board for Community Colleges. “Accordingly, today’s tuition decision strikes a careful balance between that need and our commitment to provide an outstanding and worthy educational experience.”
The State Board also agreed to approve select increases in the tuition differential rates that are in addition to the base tuition. The board approved increasing the differential for Northern Virginia Community College by $1.00 per credit hour. Even with the differential, NVCC’s tuition remains the lowest among comparable colleges in the Washington, D.C. metro area.
Further, the board approved an increase of 50 cents per credit hour to the tuition differential rate for John Tyler Community College in Chesterfield and the Tri-city area.
The tuition differential rates remain unchanged from last year for the following community colleges: Germanna in Fredericksburg; Piedmont Virginia in Charlottesville; Reynolds in Richmond; Tidewater in Hampton Roads; Thomas Nelson on the Virginia Peninsula; and Virginia Western in Roanoke.
The State Board increased the tuition rate for out-of-state students by $4.00 per credit hour to a total of $346.85 per credit hour. As required by law, the Board also approved an increase of $1.00 per credit hour to support the debt service for Virginia’s Higher Education Equipment Trust Fund. Out-of-state students make up approximately five percent of the total enrollment of Virginia’s Community Colleges.
OUT-OF-STATE ACTIVE DUTY MILITARY DISCOUNT
The Board elected to take advantage of a change in state law that allows public institutions to charge reduced tuition and mandatory fees to active duty military members stationed outside Virginia who are enrolled in degree programs associated with their Military Occupational Specialty (MOS). The Out-of-State Active Duty Military Discount essentially allows the VCCS to charge active service members a reduced tuition rate along with the $1.00 per credit hour capital fee required of all out-of-state students. The discount will save military members more than half of what they would otherwise pay in out-of-state tuition.