Salem Community College announces new simplified pricing model effective July 5, 2017
CARNEYS POINT TWP. — Salem Community College will become the first two-year college in southern New Jersey to enact a simplified pricing model.
The new structure will fold the per-credit College fee, technology fee and many current course fees into the tuition rate. In addition, SCC will eliminate the registration and graduation fees.
Effective Summer Session 2 (July 5, 2017), the new per-credit tuition rate for an in-county student will be $165. Currently, a student pays $135 per credit when the college and technology fees are added to the $102 per-credit tuition rate. The total jumps to $162 when a per-credit course fee is applied to two-thirds of the courses. The new rates — approved by the Board of Trustees on January 19 — will also correspondingly impact out-of-county and out-of-state students.
The simplified structure will add 9 percent to overall costs for new students. The increase for in-county students is the first in four years and only the fourth hike in 10 years, according to President Michael Gorman.
Current full-time SCC students will not be affected by the increase, according to Gorman, thanks to the tuition assurance program begun last September. By remaining full time, those students are guaranteed the current rates for four semesters. Similarly, the simplified pricing assures incoming, full-time students no further increase while they maintain a full-time load.
The Board also voted to set science and art class materials fees at $30 per credit (an increase of $3), and to adopt a four-year plan to increase tuition by 2.5 percent annually starting in fiscal year 2019.
Fees in selective-admissions programs will remain in place.
The new pricing model comes after Gorman gathered input from employees, students, board members and external stakeholders.
“With the new pricing model, we are trying to demonstrate our integrity to our students and their families,” he said. “Having been part of Salem County since 1981, I know that residents value authenticity and transparency.
“The Board has approved a genuine pricing structure,” he continued. “The current assessment structure, which colleges and universities have used for decades, greatly concerns me. It’s misleading to set a tuition rate of $102 per credit and charge fees that increase the cost by nearly 60 percent for courses such as English 101.”
Gorman noted that SCC remains competitive with its southern New Jersey counterparts and a true bargain when compared to a four-year school.
“Over the past several months, President Gorman and his administrative team have carefully weighed the pros and cons of the new pricing model,” said Board of Trustees Chair Dorothy Hall. “Ultimately, the Board agrees that it’s in the best interests of our students to be as transparent as possible. We believe they appreciate the College being fair and reasonable as possible with our pricing.”
Until now, among New Jersey’s 19 community colleges, only Union County College has implemented a similar simplified pricing model. Gorman said that in his recent in-depth discussion with its president, he learned that Union is fully committed to this pricing structure.