Even with an increase in tuition, DCC is well under rates compared to other community colleges.
Finding an affordable college can be a challenge for students as tuitions rise during difficult economic times.
Even after a 5 percent increase in tuition, Dawson Community College remains the most affordable community college in the state.
For an in-district student, DCC charges $3,082 – nearly $600 less than Miles Community College and Flathead Valley Community College.
For in-state tuition, DCC charges $4,245, also more affordable than MCC and FVCC.
In 2010-2011, in-district tuition at DCC was $2,856, which was the lowest rate in the state, $169 less than Montana State University – Great Falls.
That year, all other schools in the state charged more than $3,000.
DCC was also below the 2010-11 state average of $3,267.
According to dean of administrative services Justin Cross, going to DCC is a bargain.
“What we have to offer is just as good – if not better – than what others in the state are offering,” he said.
In the last 10 years, DCC has consistently been an affordable option for students, Cross said.
Going back to 2000-2001, DCC tuition was $1,596. Although it was well under the Montana average of $2,088, MCC had the lowest tuition rate then at $1,512.
But for the last four years now, it is DCC that holds the title of “most affordable community college in the state.”
“And we have even more to offer now,” Cross said. “New and improved resources, more programs. It’s a good deal.”
Despite having the lowest tuition, DCC enrollment has decreased from a total of 644 in the spring of 2011 to 437 this fall.
Reach Charlie Denison at [email protected].
By Charlie Denison
Ranger-Review Staff Writer