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Officials think lower tuition good idea

By By Ben Alexander/The Meridian Star
Dec. 13, 2000
A proposal to lower tuition rates for out-of-state students at Mississippi's community colleges and universities is being applauded by local officials.
Crawford was referring to State Sen. Videt Carmichael's proposal to offer the same tuition for out-of-state students who live within 50 miles of an institution of higher learning as tuition charged in-state residents.
Currently colleges and universities in Mississippi charge out-of-state students more per semester for attending classes. The cost per semester for someone who is declared an in-state student at MCC would be only $500, compared to $1,320 per semester for out-of-state students. In-state students at MSU-Meridian Campus pay $1,361 per semester compared to $1,974 for out-of-state residents.
Crawford said if the bill were to pass then local colleges and universities would be on a level playing field with institutions in neighboring states.
Carmichael, D-Meridian, agrees that the schools near state lines are competing essentially with one hand tied behind their backs.
Meridian Community College President Dr. Scott Elliot says if the proposed legislation is passed it would not only provide out-of-state students with an extra incentive to attend classes in the Magnolia State, but could also lend a hand in the area of economics to each community where the institutions are located.
Ben Alexander is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. E-mail him at balexander@themeridianstar.com.

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