Amid statewide tuition increases, junior and community college officials are reassuring Mississippians the programs are still an affordable investment. MPB's Alexis Ware reports
Tuition for a year at a Mississippi community college is up an average of 13 percent. Kell Smith is with the Mississippi Community College Board. He says despite cost increases, attending junior college is a viable choice for many students.
"The community college system is an affordable post secondary option for Mississippi, and hopefully we'll be able to keep our tuition steady but that largely depends on the state's economy."
Smith says the colleges faced a 26 million dollar cut in state funding, leaving the individual institutions to make-up the difference.
Ronnie Nettles is the president of Copiah-Lincoln Community College. He says Co-Lin typically considers tuition increases every other year. He says it's important to keep community college tuition at an affordable rate.
"We're all trying to maintain the lowest possible tuition rate that we can for our area. What we know is if we increase too much then it has an impact on enrollment, and that's the last thing we want to do is affect accessibility for our students."
The new tuition will take effect in the 2017-2018 school year. Smith says each college is working to ensure the academic programs continue to provide a quality education.