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Tuition Freeze at Maine Community Colleges

Tuition Freeze at Maine Community Colleges

maineCCSCommunity colleges have been a great resource for cash strapped students looking to start their education at an affordable price. The state of Maine recently announced that the seven community colleges housed under their system will be freezing tuition pricing again for the upcoming 2010-2011 academic year.

This tuition freeze is part of a decade long plan to bring Maine’s community college tuition pricing in line with that of the national average. In order to achieve this goal, the community colleges have frozen tuition rates seven of the last twelve years (see chart).

MCCS Tuition Increases

1997/98 $1,980
1998/99 $2,040
1999/00 $2,040
2000/01 $2,040
2001/02 $2,040
2002/03 $2,040
2003/04 $2,040
2004/05 $2,040
2005/06 $2,220
2006/07 $2,340
2007/08 $2,400
2008/09 $2,460
2009/10 $2,520
2010/11 $2,520

“Maine has the lowest per capita income and the lowest college attainment rates in New England,” noted President Fitzsimmons in making the announcement. “Our colleges and Board of Trustees have made a sustained commitment to make higher education more affordable in Maine. In a tough economy, when students are struggling to enroll or stay in school, that effort has become all the more urgent.” would like to applaud the Maine Community College System for their efforts in making college affordable for their residents and the 16,300 currently enrolled students.

For more information about the Maine Community College system, you can check out their website here.

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Thomas College Guarantees a Job After Graduation

Thomas College Guarantees a Job After Graduation

gotjobsNot only do they guarantee that their graduates will get a job, they will make the payments on student loans for up to one year or longer for those that can’t get employed.  All I can say is “WOW”

In lieu of making the student loan payments, Thomas College will also allow unemployed students to come back and take an unlimited number of classes for free for up to 2 years!

Now you know that this deal comes with a catch. Thomas College is certainly not going to pay for someone to sit on a couch in their parent’s basement for a year, covered in cheese puffs and surrounded by empty pizza boxes while they play their favorite game on Nintendo Wii. I am guessing some parents may object to this as well!

To be eligible, a student must satisfy the following:

  • Sign a written agreement with the College
  • Graduate with a minimum 2.75 cumulative grade-point-average from a baccalaureate degree program. A minimum of 90 credits must be completed in the undergraduate day division
  • Complete a three-credit-hour internship within your program of study
  • Register and work with the College’s Career Services Office
  • Be in good financial standing with both the College and student-loan agencies

Apparently, the Guaranteed Job Placement Program (also known as G-Job) at Thomas College has been around since 1999.

“We generally find that 95 percent of our students find a position six months outside of their graduation date, so in the past 10 years of the program, we’ve only had to pay out six times,” said Edwards (Thomas College Provost). “And of those six times, five have been payouts in the sense that students have come back to get more education at the graduate level, often times looking to move in a different career path.”

I know this information doesn’t necessarily fall along the theme of helping to make college affordable. However, going to a College or University that guarantees a job after graduation sure does make the educational investment/expense more inviting.

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