Audio – Senator Keith Ingram Reporting News From 91st General Assembly
June 8th, 2018 • News

From the beautiful hallways of your historic state Capitol, this is Senator Keith Ingram.

Over the past few weeks, the trustees of Arkansas colleges and universities have been meeting to set tuition and fees for the fall semester. Although the cost of higher education will go up for most state-supported institutions, the good news is that costs won’t go up as much as in recent years.

One reason is that the legislature approved significant changes in the funding model for state colleges and universities. Institutions will be rewarded financially if they place more emphasis on better graduation rates, rather than simply boosting enrollment. Too many students leave college early, before earning a degree, because of financial difficulties. With that in mind, the legislature added $10 million to higher education’s funding formula, to help institutions hold down tuition and fees. The results are in, and the plan appears to be working.

The best example is right here in eastern Arkansas. ASU Mid South will not raise either tuition or mandatory fees. The cost per credit hour will be the same next year as it is this year. The cost of attending ASU in Jonesboro will go up, but only slightly, by about 1.5 percent. Essentially, the cost of a credit hour will go up by only $4. If you plan to become a Razorback, mandatory fees at Fayetteville next semester will go up by less than one percent, or $2 per credit hour.

At Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas, the cost per credit hour will go up by only one dollar, from $70 to $71. For the previous two years, East Arkansas Community College in Forrest City was the only campus in the state to not raise tuition or fees. Next year tuition will go up slightly, by $1 a credit hour for Arkansas students and $2 a credit hour for out-of-state students.

Higher education is a wise investment. Over the course of a lifetime, someone with a college degree can expect to earn at least half a million dollars more than a person with just a high school diploma.

From the Capitol, it is always my great honor and sincere privilege to serve you as your state Senator. This is Keith Ingram.

      Click to Listen - Audio Recording from June 6th, 2018