Students are registering for spring 2013 classes at Pima Community College, where they will be paying some of the lowest tuition and fees in the nation.
According to the College Board, PCC’s 2012-13 tuition and fees for in-state students ranks in the lowest sixth among two-year institutions in the U.S.
The data, which were noted by Interim Chancellor Dr. Suzanne Miles at Wednesday’s meeting of the PCC Governing Board, were collected in a Chronicle of Higher Education database of more than 3,300 colleges and universities.
The numbers show that among 987 public two-year institutions nationwide, the vast majority -- 826 community colleges, or 84 percent -- have higher tuition and fees than PCC’s $2,060. The U.S. average for public two-year institutions is $3,130, according to a recent article in Community College Times.
The database also indicates that among Arizona’s 20 public two-year institutions, PCC has the fifth-lowest tuition and fees.
Maintaining low tuition is important for several reasons, says Scott Stewart, Governing Board chairman. “First and foremost, it demonstrates our commitment to accessibility. We are indeed the community’s college and our tuition must never be a barrier to furthering anyone’s education.
“Low tuition also shows that, despite going through the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, PCC’s financial situation is solid,” Mr. Stewart said.
In March, the Governing Board unanimously approved a $5 per-credit-hour change to in-state tuition to $63.50.
Pima has courses in more than 100 programs leading to two-year associate degrees in arts, business, science and general studies, as well as applied arts and applied science.
Certificates and post-degree certificates also are available, some of which can be completed in as little as two months. PCC set a record at May’s graduation when it awarded the largest number of degrees and certificates in its history.