For Immediate Release
July 26, 2016
Contact: John Cornell
(912) 279 5703
When the College of Coastal Georgia's (CCGA) fall semester kicks off next month, students enrolled for the 2016-2017 academic year may save up to $1.8 million through a combination of cost avoidance and cost reduction measures for applicable students.
President Greg Aloia and the College's leadership team are committed to finding ways to help make higher education more affordable and reduce costs for students.
This fall, full and part-time commuter students will no longer be required to purchase a campus meal plan. "We heard our students loud and clear," said Dr. Jason Umfress, vice president for student affairs. "Our commuting students use their meal plan at varying levels and don't want to have to pay for a plan if it doesn't fit their schedule or lifestyle," Umfress said. This change in policy will potentially reduce the cost to commuters attending CCGA by over $750,000.
The rising costs of textbooks continue to be another expense for students, an issue the University System of Georgia (USG) has been addressing across all institutions. Promoting with faculty the use of open educational resources, or course materials found online, the USG saved students more than $16.5 million last year. CCGA faculty have championed this initiative, implementing these types of resources in mathematics, physics, and economics programs. "These free or low-cost alternatives to costly text books have resulted in a savings of more than $400,000 per year," said Dr. Tracy Pellett, vice president for academic affairs. Additionally, Jeff Preston, vice president for business affairs, has worked with the College's bookstore vendor to find additional savings on textbooks. "We have expanded our book rentals, used books, and a price match program, which has lowered the overall cost of books by over $200,000," said Preston.
In a third area, the College has also identified an opportunity to shorten the time it takes to earn a degree by implementing a reduction of four credits from the institution's graduation requirements. Started in Fall 2015, this reduction has and will continue to save students over $450,000 in tuition and fee costs with each incoming freshman class.
"Restructuring our two-hour orientation course into a three-phase orientation process and refocusing our physical education requirements into wellness electives are ways we have creatively streamlined the curriculum to save our students money and time to earn their degrees," said Pellett.
"The faculty and staff of the College of Coastal Georgia are committed to supporting our students and eliminating barriers to college completion,'" said President Aloia. "Our faculty and staff are continuing to seek innovative ways to allow our students to focus on their academic pursuits and lessen the cost of a college education, while still offering students a first-class education in one of Georgia's most beautiful locations, The Golden Isles."
Coastal Georgia remains one of the most affordable colleges in the University System of Georgia. Tuition and fees for the 2016-2017 academic year have not increased and will remain at $4,434 annually for full time Georgia residents as well as full-time students from Florida, South Carolina and Alabama