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Budget Again Has Lowest Tuition Increase Since PSU Affiliation

For the second consecutive year, the Pennsylvania College of Technology budget, approved Thursday by the college’s board of directors, features the smallest annual tuition increase (2.03 percent) since the institution began its affiliation with Penn State in 1989.

When tuition and fees are combined, the increases specified within the 2016-17 budget are even lower: 1.71 percent for Pennsylvania residents, who account for 89 percent of the college’s total enrollment, and 1.87 percent for out-of-state students.

Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour said minimizing the tuition increase was once again the guiding principle for the senior administration team drafting the budget.

“We recognize the impact that college costs have on students and their families,” Gilmour said. “Our aim in budgeting is to continue delivering the first-rate technology education that is our hallmark, while operating in the most cost-effective manner possible. Given our success in placing graduates in good jobs in high-demand career fields, a Penn College education remains a sound investment.”

The $109,383,600 operating budget reflects an increase of less than 1 percent (.24 percent) over 2015-16. The $150,414,900 total budget represents a 2.45-percent decrease in spending, driven by a reduction in grant funding.

State appropriations remain flat at $19,584,000, accounting for 17.9 percent of the college’s operating budget and 13 percent of its total budget for 2016-17.

The college’s revenue-generating auxiliary fund budgets total $28 million for 2016-17. The restricted current fund budget – which includes grants, contracts and restricted donations for which outside entities (such as governmental agencies) direct the use of the money – is $13 million.

Rates for tuition and fees constitute the bulk of Penn College’s revenues. A student’s annual costs are based on per-credit-hour fees; the number of credits for which a student is registered determines the actual cost.

For Pennsylvania residents, tuition and fees in 2016-17 will be $536 per credit hour, an increase of $9 per credit. A full-time, in-state student enrolled for two 15-credit semesters in 2016-17 will pay $16,080 in tuition and fees, an increase of $270 over 2015-16.

Tuition and fees for out-of-state students will increase $14 per credit – to $763 per credit hour – in 2016-17. A full-time nonresident student enrolled for two 15-credit semesters will pay a total of $22,890 in tuition and fees, an increase of $420 over 2015-16.

Increases for room and board in the 2016-17 budget are also the lowest ever. Dining Services has established increases of 1.5 percent for its meal plans; Residence Life is budgeting a rate increase of 1 percent for college-owned, on-campus housing.

To assist students with their college costs, approximately $95 million in financial aid from a variety of federal, state and local sources was awarded to nearly 93 percent of Penn College students in the most recent year for which data is available.

Salary expenses for employees are decreasing 1 percent in the budget, resulting from a net reduction of 21 positions in 2016-17. Positions were eliminated in the administrative, professional, classified and faculty categories.

The reduction in positions will save the college approximately $2 million in salaries and benefits. Despite mandated increases in the state retirement plans, employee benefit expenses are approximately the same as in 2015-16.

Gifts to the City of Williamsport ($100,000) and the Williamsport Area School District ($35,000) are again included in the budget. These voluntary contributions are re-evaluated annually.

For more about Penn College, a national leader in applied technology education, email the Admissions Office or call toll-free 800-367-9222.

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