Pinebelt community colleges react to tuition increase

Pinebelt community colleges react to tuition increase
House Bill 405 passes the house. Photo source WDAM

JONES COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - The cost of tuition is increasing for community colleges in the state of Mississippi.

Tuition and fees for Jones county junior college will cost $3,480, while tuition and fees for Pearl River Community College will be $3,410, according to the Mississippi Community College Board .

Unfortunately, this has become a trend in state of Mississippi.

"I'm worried about the trends and the impact on our state down the road," PRCC President-elect Adam Breerwood said.

"The legislature has been good to us for the past 100 years, but we do think that this is an extremely dangerous path that the state has chosen to take on this," JCJC President Jesse Smith said.

Students are the top priority for both JCJC and PRCC, and as cuts increase, they're expected to be affected heavily.

"I hope our students can handle these cuts," Breerwood said. "That's really who it's going to affect. Once you get rid of a program, it's very difficult to get it back."

The impact of the cuts has affected programs at JCJC as well.

"In one program, we had a reduction in size," Smith said. "We went to a two-instructor program, to a one-instructor program."

JCJC also had to reduce their staff by 30 positions.

Below are the rate increases for every community college in the state of Mississippi. It includes the percent change from the previous year, according to the Mississippi Community College Board.

Coahoma: $2,870, 7.5 percent

Copiah-Lincoln: $3,180, 16.5 percent

East Central: $2,790, 19.7 percent

East Mississippi: $3,240, 14.1

Hinds: $3,080, 8.5 percent

Holmes: $3,110, 13.5 percent

Itawamba: $2,800, 7.7 percent

Jones: $3,480, 16 percent

Meridian: $2,914, 15.9 percent

Mississippi Delta: $3,060, 16.8 percent

Mississippi Gulf Coast: $3,220, 5.9 percent

Northeast Mississippi: $3,202, 18.5 percent

Northwest Mississippi: $3,000, 7.1 percent

Pearl River: $3,410, 14 percent

Southwest Mississippi: $3,200, 14.3 percent