Ivy Tech Community College has announced that it will hold tuition steady for current full-time students and for part-time students who never take a semester off.
This is good news for students seeking to complete postsecondary education without incurring unnecessary additional student loan debt; and if it leads to more students completing their degrees, the state’s workforce will be the ultimate beneficiary.
Ivy Tech is trying to keep more students continuously enrolled because its enrollment has fallen 25 percent in the past three years and because students who stay enrolled are more likely to finish their studies. Less than 30 percent of Ivy Tech students complete a certificate or associate degree program in six years.
“This is an incentive model for both our nontraditional, part-time students along with those full-time students on a two-year track to graduation,” Ivy Tech President Tom Snyder said in a written statement. “We know students who are continuously enrolled are more likely to complete a credential.”
About two-thirds of Ivy Tech’s 91,000 students take fewer than 12 credit hours per semester. To qualify for the tuition freeze, those part-time students must take at least six credit hours in the fall and spring semesters, as well as at least three credit hours in the summer semester.
Full-time students must take more than 30 credit hours in each academic year to qualify for the tuition freeze.
Ivy Tech’s announcement follows plans by Purdue University and Indiana University’s Bloomington campus to hold in-state tuition steady for the next academic year.
Teresa Lubbers, Indiana’s commissioner for higher education, said, “Ivy Tech should be commended for taking this important step in the right direction that also supports our statewide goal for 60 percent of Hoosiers to have a quality degree or credential by 2025.”
Indiana’s colleges are taking the correct approach in holding the line on tuition wherever possible. Advanced education is vital both for the students and for Indiana’s increasingly technological employers.