The Arkansas Tech University Board of Trustees approved a 3.9 percent tuition increase for students on the Russellville campus during its regular monthly meeting at the Ross Pendergraft Library and Technology Center on Thursday.
The increase means that undergraduate tuition at Arkansas Tech will be $187 per student semester credit hour in 2012-13. That figure is $180 per student semester credit hour during the current academic year.
Trustees also approved $1 per credit hour increases in fees for instructional support and health and wellness initiatives.
As a result of the increases, an Arkansas Tech student enrolled in 15 semester credit hours will pay $135 more per semester during the 2012-13 academic year as compared to 2011-12.
“We are always reluctant to ask our trustees to increase tuition,” said Arkansas Tech President Dr. Robert C. Brown. “Arkansas Tech has a proud history of doing more with less. It is a testament to our outstanding faculty and staff that we are able to provide a rigorous, quality education and do so with less tuition dollars from our students and less funding from the state. Arkansas Tech continues to be the best value in higher education in our state.”
After the increase, Arkansas Tech tuition and fees for 2012-13 will be less than the 2011-12 and 2012-13 rates at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Arkansas State University at Jonesboro, the University of Central Arkansas and Henderson State University.
A comparison of state funding to graduation rates at Arkansas Tech in recent years reveals an institutional track record of efficiency.
Due to enrollment growth, state funding per full-time equivalent student at Arkansas Tech has gone from $5,096.90 in 2006-07 to $4,112.76 in 2011-12, a decrease of 19.3 percent.
The number of degrees earned at Arkansas Tech has gone from 1,204 in 2006-07 to 1,993 in 2010-11, an increase of 65.5 percent.
“As Arkansas Tech continues to grow both in enrollment and degree production, state funding has not kept pace,” said Brown. “Our institution has been the leader in implementing state laws and regulations such as the eight-semester degree plan, the new transfer policy, the classified pay plan and the reduction of degree programs to 120 credit hours. Arkansas Tech was the first institution in the state to comply with those laws, and we will continue to work in partnership with our representatives in state government to provide for the higher education needs of our state.”
Trustees also approved tuition rates for graduate students at Arkansas Tech (increase from $207 per student semester credit hour in 2011-12 to $215 per student semester credit hour in 2012-13) and tuition rates for students at Arkansas Tech-Ozark Campus (increase from $77 per student semester credit hour in 2011-12 to $84 per student semester credit hour in 2012-13).
In other action on Thursday, the Arkansas Tech Board of Trustees approved:
*meal plan rates for 2012-13, which represent a 3.4 percent increase over 2011-12;
*residence hall rates for 2012-13, which represent a 5 percent increase over 2011-12;
*renewal of a banking services agreement with Liberty Bank of Arkansas for the 2012-13 fiscal year;
*authorization of appropriate personnel to conduct banking transactions on behalf of the university during the 2012-13 fiscal year;
*a one-time bonus of $1,000 per full-time unclassified faculty and staff member, which will be paid on May 31, 2012, in compliance with all salary guidelines and provisions of Arkansas Statute 6-63-309;
*installation of synthetic turf, installation of additional drainage, correction of the uneven playing surface and improvements to the south entrance at Thone Stadium at Buerkle Field at a cost of $900,000, with funding over eight years coming from an increase in the athletic transfer fee of $1 per student semester credit hour;
*a request to begin the architect selection process for a firm that will assist in the design process for renovations to the southeast wing of the Hull Physical Education Building;
*a memorandum of understanding which calls for Arkansas Tech-Ozark Campus to become the fiscal agency responsible for the Johnson County adult education program as a means of providing enhanced opportunities for educational attainment;
*letters of intent from Arkansas Tech-Ozark Campus which would allow for the creation of departments to manage and administer the Associate of Applied Science degree in nursing and the Associate Degree of General Studies;
*requests to establish and re-establish provisional positions at Arkansas Tech-Ozark Campus related to the Arkansas Department of Workforce Services Trade Assistance Act and the Arkansas Department of Higher Education Career Pathways Initiative;
*issuance of a construction contract in the amount of $1.289 million to Team General Contracting of North Little Rock to perform a renovation to Tech Field, the home facility for the Arkansas Tech baseball program;
*issuance of a construction contract in the amount of $739,000 to Cornerstone Construction of Russellville to construct a new practice facility and associated infrastructure for the Arkansas Tech marching band.
In personnel-related items on Thursday, the Arkansas Tech Board of Trustees approved the following appointments:
*promotion of Aaron Hogan to associate dean for residence life effective April 1;
*promotion of Jessica Holloway to director of purchasing effective July 1, following the retirement of Beth Foster following 40 years of service to the university;
*promotion of Jana Parker to director of academic services in the Arkansas Tech Office of Academic Affairs effective April 1;
*promotion of Andrea Hoelzeman to institutional assistant in the Arkansas Tech Office of Academic Affairs effective April 16;
*promotion of Dr. Christopher Giroir, assistant professor of college student personnel, to head of the Arkansas Tech Department of College Student Personnel effective July 1 following the decision by Dr. Susan Underwood, associate professor of college student personnel, to return to full-time teaching in the department;
*hiring of Dr. Dawn Ward as head of the Arkansas Tech Department of Art and professor of art effective July 1;
*hiring of Nathan George as director of the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center regional office located at Arkansas Tech;
*hiring of Garry Holstein, visiting instructor of art; Aaron McArthur, assistant professor of history; Jennifer Samson, assistant professor of psychology; Shelly Randall, visiting assistant professor of nursing; and Susan Self, visiting assistant professor of nursing for the 2012-13 academic year.
Trustees accepted the following resignations:
*Edwin Cuenco, assistant professor of art, effective July 10;
*Dr. Donald M. Gooch, assistant professor of political science, effective Aug. 13;
*Christina Merle, assistant professor of health information management; effective May 12;
*Shanna Turney, tutor coordinator for Upward Bound programs, effective April 30.
Trustees accepted the following retirements:
*Dr. Steven Zimmer, assistant professor of chemistry, effective July 6.
*Dr. Richard Cohoon, distinguished professor of geology and the longest-serving faculty member in Arkansas Tech history with 52 years of service, effective May 12.