College students: Take more hours, save money

Kokomo Tribune

The percentage of adults with college degrees in Indiana has dropped over the past decade. The Hoosier State’s college attainment rate is 41st in the nation.

There is an urgency to raise the completion rates of two-year and four-year college degrees, as well as workforce credentials. And last year, the state took significant steps to help more students graduate on time.

The Indiana Commission for Higher Education launched a new initiative to keep college students on track for graduation. Called “15 to Finish,” it encourages students to take at least 15 credit hours each semester.

To graduate on time, students need to complete a minimum of 30 credits per year, or 15 per semester. But just 33 percent of students attending Indiana’s public colleges were doing so.

Gov. Mike Pence signed House Enrolled Act 1348 last year, as well. It requires students to complete at least 30 credit hours each year in order to renew their financial aid at the same level the following school year. The majority of state aid is distributed through the Frank O’Bannon education grant and 21st Century Scholars program.

Recently, the Commission for Higher Education reported more college students were on track for on-time graduation at the state’s four-year, publicly funded institutions. Statewide, 30-credit-hour course-completion among 21st Century Scholars improved 56 percent over the prior year.

Each additional year of college costs students $50,000 in tuition.

Students, take 15 credit hours each semester at college. You’ll be more likely to graduate, earn better grades and save money.

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