Traverse City Record-Eagle

June 25, 2013

NMC Board OKs tuition hikes

Traverse City Record-Eagle

---- — TRAVERSE CITY — Northwestern Michigan College in-district students will have to pay 2 percent more for classes this fall, while those living out of district will see about a 4 percent increase in tuition and fees.

A nearly 32 percent hike was approved for students taking automotive, audio-technology, construction technology and nursing courses.

The NMC board unanimously approved the increases with little discussion Monday night, having covered the issue before.

The differential tuition is a first for these majors, targeted because of their small class sizes and high expense. The nursing program, for example, received more than $1 million in general fund subsidies over the last three years. The higher tuition rates is intended to reduce general fund subsidies to less than $100,000 each year,

Next year’s budget includes $40,000 for scholarships to help financially strapped students now enrolled in nursing, automotive and culinary programs.

Culinary students will see an increase to $135.65 per credit hour, but course fees will go away, making the increase for in-district students almost a wash. Out-of-district students will have to pay a couple hundred dollars more each semester, said Vicki Cook, vice president for finance and administration.

In other business, the board approved President Tim Nelson’s contract. It will increase his base pay of $178,300 equal to the cost of living index this year and each July 1 in subsequent years. It doesn’t preclude future salary increases. The contract detailed other benefits, including a $20,000 allowance to carry out duties, a $750/month car allowance, 25 days vacation, 6 percent of his salary to a deferred compensation plan, and life insurance.

NMC Board Chairman Doug Bishop praised Nelson as an “extraordinary college president,” who was invaluable in obtaining legislation that allows Michigan’s community colleges to grant baccalaureate degrees for specific studies.