Two major factors led to the nearly 5 percent increase in tuition fees at Iowa Central Community College.
The first factor, Iowa Central President Jesse Ulrich told the college’s board of directors on Tuesday, is inflation.
“Just because we’re a college doesn’t mean we’re excluded from the nearly 9 percent increase in inflation for the cost of doing business,” as he.
The second reason is that the state Legislature has not passed its budget for the next fiscal year and the college does not know how much state funding it will receive. State community colleges are asking for $ 14 million, according to Ulrich, but now the House bill has less than half that.
“If we can’t get it out of the Legislature, obviously it has to come in the form of a tuition increase,” he said. Ulrich said.
The 4.62 percent increase raised the in-state tuition rate from $ 184 per credit hour to $ 192.50 per credit hour.
Out -of -state students will see their tuition increase from $ 271.50 per credit hour to $ 284.25 per credit hour.
Ulrich is proposing a change in tuition fees – currently, students from Iowa border states and who maintain a 3.0 GPA receive a discounted tuition rate from the standard rate of out of state. Ulrich suggests extending that to all out -of -state students pursuing a 3.0 GPA. Such students will pay $ 197.50 per hour of credit next school year, compared to $ 189 per hour of credit this year.
“Iowa is fighting for the people,” Ulrich said. “We need a lot of people to come to our state and the data we have shows that 35 percent (of our students) are from our (community college) region.”
He said 77 percent of Iowa Central graduates remain in the college service region once they graduate and enter the workforce.
“That’s why we’re not just a pipeline of workers, but we’re also a pipeline of population,” Ulrich said. “What we want to do is be more aggressive about wanting them to go to Fort Dodge, have a good experience and know that this region can be a great place to raise a family, live and get a good life. “
The board is unanimous in approving the new tuition fee.
Room and board fees were also increased by an additional $ 100 per semester, for a total of $ 7,330 per semester.
Ulrich also said the Federal Pell Grant adds $ 400 for students, which will help balance the cost of tuition and housing increases.
The board approved a proposal from OPN Architects, in Des Moines, to create a concept design for a new athlete facility on the Iowa Central campus. The project is for a synthetic turf for soccer and football competition, as well as a design concept for a 300-meter indoor track field facility adjacent to the south campus entrance.
“We have a long -standing need to create a safer place for our student -athletes to practice right here on campus,” Ulrich said.
The college plans to begin construction of the synthetic turf field this fall, but plans for a facility inside the track could not be made immediately. Ulrich said the project is part of long-range planning.
“I think we can affect about 800 student-athletes with this project, and then free up a ton of intramural space for the general students that we don’t have now,” he said. as he.
OPN Architects will be paid $ 86,700 for its work on the design and follow-through of the project.
The concept design of the project is expected to be completed in June, with construction starting this fall.
At the beginning of the meeting, the board welcomes the new member. Andrea Oswald, of Twin Lakes, was appointed by the board to replace Deb Loerch, who resigned last month. Oswald is a nurse practitioner at the Iowa Heart Center.
“I’ve been in the community for a long time – I was born and raised in Fort Dodge,” he said.
Oswald is also an alumna of the Iowa Central nursing program.
“You came recommended by your next,” Ulrich said.
The board also approved a change in Ulrich’s contract as college president. The three -year contract begins July 1 and includes a salary of $ 255,000. He will also receive a monthly car allowance of $ 1,000.