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2011 July 11 - 12:00 am

NEWS BRIEFS:

  • La. Lawmakers OK Tuition Hike

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Lawmakers have agreed to raise tuition rates for students at most community and technical colleges across Louisiana, one of the only college tuition increases to win passage this session.

The measure, given final passage with a 30-5 Senate vote, will standardize the tuition rates charged to students at the community colleges. The two-year schools will be able to charge about $2,400 a year for full-time students, not counting student-approved fees. Technical schools will be able to phase in tuition increases as well.

The tuition hike, backed by Gov. Bobby Jindal, will generate $5.3 million in the 2011-12 school year and $10.4 million two years later.

Other tuition and fee increases supported by Jindal failed to gain traction this session.

  • Volunteers Will Train at Oahu CC

HONOLULU (AP) — The Hawaii Host Committee for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation has selected an Oahu community college to train volunteers and workers for November’s conference in Honolulu.

The committee said Kapiolani Community College is to be responsible for training those who will be interacting with delegates and attendees of the APEC 2011 Leaders’ Week. More than 20,000 are expected to attend, including leaders of the 21 APEC economies, ministers, business leaders and media.

About 1,200 volunteers are needed for roles such as greeting guests at the airport and escorting them on shuttles. Volunteers are to be trained in areas including customer service and Hawaiian culture.

  • Maricopa CCs OK Tax Increase

PHOENIX (AP) — The Maricopa County Community College District governing board has approved a 3 percent increase in the county property tax. The district says it was forced to raise the property tax to offset a big decrease in state aid.

The property tax on a house assessed at $100,000 will increase about $2.95 per year. The new tax will generate about $11.3 million in revenue for the 10-college system.

The Arizona Republic reports the vote was 4-1, with one board member voting no.

Board members Dana Saar and Doyle Burke say the increase was needed because the system had absorbed rising enrollments while revenue shrank. State aid to the 10-college system has fallen about 85 percent, or $38 million.

  • Lawsuit Aims To Save CC Garden

SAN MATEO, Calif. (AP) — A lawsuit has been filed in an effort to save part of a Northern California college garden from being turned into a parking lot.

Friends of the College of San Mateo Gardens say in a lawsuit filed that San Mateo County Community College District trustees failed to perform a state-required environmental review before approving the paving project last month.

The suit says the parking lot will destroy a campus green space that supports wildlife and is popular with students.

About 13,500 square feet out of 50,000 square feet of garden will be uprooted for the lot.

District spokeswoman Barbara Christiansen tells the San Francisco Chronicle that an attorney and a consultant say a full environmental review isn’t needed because the district is only modifying an existing project.

  • Grants To Aid Ind. Veterans

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind (AP) — Twenty-five Indiana colleges and universities are receiving a total of more than $1 million in grants to provide services for the state’s student service members, veterans and their families.

Purdue University’s Military Family Research Institute awarded the grants last week to Purdue and Indiana universities and several of their branches. The grants also went to Ivy Tech Community College, several of its branches and other schools.

The grants were made through Operation Diploma, the Purdue institute’s higher education initiative. Since 2009, it’s awarded more than $2.4 million to Indiana colleges and universities for support services for the students and their families.

Other universities getting grants were Ball State, Indiana State, Evansville, Southern Indiana and Franklin and St. Mary-of-the-Woods colleges.

  • PRCC Will Not Increase Tuition

POPLARVILLE, Miss. (AP) — The Board of Trustees has approved a $32.4 million budget that does not raise tuition for students at Pearl River Community College.

Full-time, in-state students at PRCC will continue to pay $1,000 per semester in tuition.

PRCC raised tuition in 2008 and 2010.

The Hattiesburg American reports fall semester enrollment in 2010 set a record of 5,469, a 5.5 percent increase over fall 2009.

Spring enrollment, historically less than fall, topped out at 4,908 in 2011, a 2.5 percent increase over the previous spring.

Although tuition will not increase, students who live in campus residence halls will face a $100 per semester increase in room and board.

Roger Knight, dean of business services, said the increase is due to rising food and supply costs.

  • Mo. Students To Rebuild Lodge

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — College students will help rebuild a historic lodge that burned down at Lake of the Ozarks State Park.

Gov. Jay Nixon said that an agreement is being finalized in which students from State Fair Community College in Sedalia will rebuild the lodge as part of a yearlong training and education project.

A fire destroyed the dining lodge at Camp Pin Oak last September. It had been built by the Civilian Conservation Corps between 1934 and 1938.

  • College Balloon Festival Ending

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ The Pellissippi State Community College Hot Air Balloon Festival has become a victim of its own success.

College President Allen Edwards told faculty and staff members in an email that the event will be stopped. Increasing up-front costs, risks associated with weather and massive traffic jams on the Pellissippi Parkway did it in, according to The Knoxville News Sentinel.

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