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The moves are the latest in the organization’s “Students First” plan to merge its community colleges into one accredited institution by 2023. The result, to be called Connecticut State Community College, still needs to be accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.
A plan for a phased reopening of colleges and universities was unveiled by Gov. Ned Lamont today, as the state’s death toll topped 2,700 but hospitalizations again declined.
Meanwhile, students at the four universities in the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities system – including Western Connecticut State in Danbury -- will pay roughly $400 or $800 more per year.
Students at the four state universities – including Western Connecticut State in Danbury -- would pay $6,162 for full-time in-state tuition, up from the current $5,924.
Funding for the initiative is still to be finalized; the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities system estimates it could cost as much as $15 million.
Broadie became president of Housatonic in 2015, and added Gateway to his responsibilities in 2017 when Dorsey Kendrick retired from its presidency.
“There is always going to be a reaction to substantial change,” says newly installed CSCU regional president Thomas Coley, whose oversight includes Bridgeport's Housatonic and Norwalk Community College, “which is what you’re witnessing now. It takes time and conversation.”
The system’s community colleges include Norwalk Community College and Bridgeport’s Housatonic Community College.
Meanwhile, faculty at five community colleges and two state universities have delivered votes of no confidence in a plan to consolidate the state's 12 community colleges into one system.
Multimillion-dollar construction projects, enrollment numbers, a new branding initiative and, according to WCSU President John Clark, the overall atmosphere are all positive signs at the 116-year-old university.
Average tuition and fees at CSCU universities -- including WestConn in Danbury -- will increase by $479 or 4.4 percent for an in-state undergraduate commuter student and by $860 or 3.6 percent for in-state residential students.
The Connecticut State Colleges and Universities system has been wrestling with ways to make up what it says could be a $57 million shortfall.
A final vote on the proposed 5 percent increase at Danbury's Western Connecticut State and three other universities will take place on March 28.
“With all due respect to the new governor and state legislature, this kind of a structural shift has implications that will extend far beyond the best intentions of present leadership," says Newtown First Selectman Dan Rosenthal.
"There are many new members in the General Assembly this year, so we have to educate them about our system and what we do," says Ojakian of the organization that's weighing a variety of tuition scenarios for the 2019-20 school year.