ULS board approves flat rate tuition program

Keator Poleman

Digital editor

The University of Louisiana System’s Board of Supervisors approved the adoption of a flat rate tuition for the Compete LA program when they met Friday at Northwestern State University.

Compete LA is designed to help the 653,000 Louisiana students who have some college credits but no degree re-engage with higher education.

The proposed rate is $275 per credit hour. The price is all-inclusive except required course materials.

Eligible recipients of the program must be Louisiana residents with some college credit but no bachelor’s degree, been out of college for at least two years and academically/financially eligible to enroll at a ULS institution.

ULS President Dr. Jim Henderson announced the launch of the program at a Natchitoches Chamber of Commerce meeting in August.

The board also addressed the risk of ULS facilities being affected by the coronavirus. Henderson said the board is preparing for possible contaminations.

He compared the issue to Hurricane Katrina by saying some ULS campuses may need to house fellow students and personnel in the event of an outbreak.

The board also addressed matters pertaining to NSU specifically.

President Dr. Chris Maggio asked the board to approve the revisions made to NSU’s mission statement. Through an email sent to Henderson, Maggio said the revisions were made following six months of analysis.

Maggio said the revised statement is “inclusive, embraces diversity, anticipates change, and facilitates education access and attainment.”

The new mission statement reads as follows:

“Northwestern State University is a responsive, student-oriented institution committed to acquiring, creating, and disseminating knowledge through innovative teaching, research, and service. With its certificate, undergraduate, and graduate programs, Northwestern State University prepares its increasingly diverse student population to contribute to an inclusive global community with a steadfast dedication to improving our region, state, and nation.”

Maggio said the university’s vision to be the nation’s premier regional university has not changed.

He outlined NSU’s core values as:

  • Our students are our priority
  • Diversity helps define who we are
  • We are future-focused
  • Innovation leads the forward edge of change
  • We honor and respect the ideals of freedom
  • We are careful stewards
  • Integrity is our cornerstone
  • We are a team

The ULS board approved NSU’s proposal to renew a general agricultural lease in DeSoto Parish.

These three tracts of land totaling 366.98 acres were acquired through the last will and testament of John Crow, an NSU alumnus. The lease will commence on May 16, 2020 and end on May 15, 2025 with the possibility of adding an additional five years.

Under the agreement, NSU will receive $15,100 per year and retain 100% of the land’s surface and minerals.

All proposed Louisiana Education Quality Support Funds were approved as well. NSU’s proposed funds are the:

  • Dr. Stan Chadick Professorship in Mathematics
  • Dudley Downing Distinguished Graduate Endowed Scholarship in Education.

The board approved the Universtiy of Louisiana at Monroe’s request to enter into a memorandum of understanding with the other ULS member institutions. The memorandum is intended to ease the pathway to a pharmacy degree.

The partnership ensures that 100% of students in the ULS who meet the minimum requirements can interview.

In other news, the board announced plans to review ULM presidency applicants.

The search committee will convene March 11 at ULM “to accept their charge, gather input from the community, approve a tentative search timeline, and publish a list of ideal candidate qualifications.”

Sadie LeComte

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