College, UVA united on reduced tuition proposal

The University of Virginia’s College at Wise and UVA are moving closer to expand the college’s region for reduced out-of-state tuition.

In September, the university’s board of visitors gave its support to the college’s plan, which would expand the current area where out-of-state students are eligible for reduced tuition at UVa-Wise.

Reduced tuition now applies to areas of Kentucky and Tennessee that are within 50 air miles of the college. Under the college’s proposal, students in parts of 13 states in the Appalachian Regional Commission’s service region would be eligible.

The ARC covers areas from New York to Mississippi along the East Coast and Gulf of Mexico.

Vice Chancellor for Finance & Administration Sim Ewing explained what this proposal would mean for UVa-Wise.

“This will allow us to provide reduced tuition for citizens domiciled in any of the counties comprised in the federally legislated ARC region.” Ewing said. The ARC region stretches from parts of Mississippi, to parts of New York.

For students to receive this adjusted rate, they must be eligible to receive in-state tuition in their state of residents.

College officials in September said the proposal would increase educational opportunities and economic prosperity and diversity across the ARC region. If the plan is approved by the General Assembly, officials added, the college could be in a position to receive ARC federal money.

If approved, Ewing said, population and educational growth can help to improve Southwest Virginia as well.

“We have a tremendous product to provide that can enhance the overall economic quality of the region.” Ewing said. “The product we are providing in the classroom is hard to beat in this region. If you can give it at a completive price, then it can enhance the academic opportunity for people in this region.”

If approved by the General Assembly in the 2019 legislative session, the tuition plan could become effective as soon as July 1.

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