Credit cap removal effective in 2018

After the spring semester, students at Wyoming community colleges won’t be able to get free class credits anymore, as the Wyoming Community College Commission plans to remove the credit cap.

Students currently attending a community college in Wyoming only pay up to 12 credits worth of tuition, and any more credits after are free.

Brandi Payne Cervera, director of Financial Aid, said that after the spring semester of 2017 the cap will be removed by the WCCC, meaning students will pay for every credit.

“Due to a depressed energy economy in Wyoming, funding for institutions of higher (education) have decreased,” Cervera said. “So the change in the cap will provide some additional revenue.”

Laramie County Community College did a study last fall on how removing the credit cap would affect its students. The data showed that 65 percent of students take 12 or less credits.

The study also said that 91 percent of students who do take more than 12 credits have enough financial aid to cover their tuition.

In-state residents who will take more than 12 credits will have to pay an additional $142.75. Students under the Western Undergraduate Exchange will pay $189.75, and out-of-state residents will pay $330.75 per credit hour.

Courtney Wilson, a nursing major, is taking 13 credits this semester and plans on taking 14-16 credits next semester.

“Luckily, I had Hathaway so that didn’t affect me this year, but I know that the following year Hathaway will only pay for so much,” Wilson said.

Wilson said she felt many students will take less classes and that this will hurt the different programs offered at LCCC.

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