KILLEEN DAILY HERALD: CTC chancellor warns about downward slope, future market

Career College Central Summary:

  • Thomas Klincar, the chancellor of Central Texas College, pointed to a downward sloping line graph signifying the college’s total student enrollment, explaining to board members that “where goes the United States military, there goes Central Texas College.”
  • During his chancellor’s report at the board’s March 12 workshop, Klincar presented board members with two documents, one showing a line graph and the other showing school rankings.
  • The line graph illustrated CTC’s total student enrollment, the size of the U.S. military and the size of Fort Hood, beginning in 2003. All lines begin to consistently decrease after 2012 as everyone begins to feel the impact of sequestration. The effects will continue to be felt by CTC for years, and the college is in the process of closing some of its facilities overseas, Klincar said.
  • The other handout ranked the top 50 institutions of higher education most popular with service members using tuition assistance in 2013.
  • “This is a handout that we’ve given you before,” Klincar said. “This is the most current ranking of the colleges and universities that serve the United States military, and as you can see on this chart (American Military University is) No. 1 today.”
  • The enrollment handout shows four of the top six schools are for-profit colleges, including American Military University. Out of the top 10 colleges, only two are considered public institutions. Central Texas College is the only associate-level college in the top 10.
  • The stricter laws governing public schools compared to looser regulations governing for-profit or private schools put CTC at a disadvantage in the marketplace, Klincar said.
  • For-profit institutions, such as Ashford University and the University of Phoenix, are now largely based near military installations because service members can use tuition assistance to pay for schooling.
  • For-profit colleges also can waive course and textbooks fees for military students, whereas public colleges are legally prohibited from doing so.
  • “It doesn’t matter that we have the lowest tuition out of all of those top six because tuition is not the driver for enrollment. It’s the out-of-pocket costs,” Klincar said.
  • This fall, of those top six schools, there will only be one that still requires extra textbook or course fees, Klincar said.

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