A Campus Master Plan, a tuition increase and a partnership to “realign” education are in the works at Yavapai College this year.
The master plan serves as a road map to help guide the college in its next several years and incorporates YC’s strategic plan to determine where to invest resources in campuses and facilities.
Following several months of review by the college’s district governing board, it was approved in November. Individual projects will be reviewed and voted on separately as they meet timelines when presented to the board.
Key plans to be reviewed include:
• Learning and Digital Commons. This concept involves state-of-the-art multimedia collaboration centers at both the Prescott and the Verde Valley campuses. Its intent is to enrich student learning experiences by providing access to books, digital library resources, digital learning tools and academic support systems.
• Integration and expansion of health sciences. Recent studies revealed that several regional needs for allied health occupations exist. Because of the anticipated growth in health sciences and the need to bring health science programs into one building, consideration is being given to a new Integrated Health Center.
Helping lead that growth is Mary Lou Mercado, just named Dean of the Schools of Health and Wellness and Science and Engineering. She previously served as a nursing program director.
• Workforce development. College officials see potential for expanding workforce training programs that need to be adapted to local market needs to provide better access to quality jobs in the immediate region.
• Increased campus housing. The college needs more student and workforce housing, according to a study completed in 2020 by Brailsford & Dunlavey. That particularly became apparent when community housing prices outpaced local and regional availabilities.
The Facilities Master Plan recommends that student and college employee housing be considered for both the east and the west campuses.
Tuition, fees are increasing for 2023-2024
For the first time in several years, YC tuition and fees are going up — but nominally when compared to other higher education institutions in the state.
Clint Ewell, vice president of the college’s finance and administrative services, said YC is considered one of the most affordable higher education options in Arizona.
“We have the second-lowest cost in the state of Arizona,” he said. “The Arizona public four-year school average is $12,000. Our price is $2,300.”
A new YC student could save $10,000 each year as freshmen and sophomores. Full-time students attending Yavapai College will save about $19,000 a year those first two years, rather than attending a four-year state university.
He said one reason YC could avoid major price increases was because the median earnings in the county were a bit below the state average. The median income in Yavapai County is $53,329 versus $61,529 for the state and $64,994 nationally.
For more information about registering for classes, visit www.yc.edu/register or call 928.717.7777.
YC Partnering with Northern Arizona University, other Colleges to Redesign Higher Education
In an alliance led by NAU President Luis Cruz Rivera, a first-of-its-kind partnership with 10 community college districts across the state of Arizona will launch in this fall.
That’s when an exploratory commission composed of representatives from community colleges, NAU and the Arizona Commerce Authority convenes in what is called Arizona Attainment Alliance.
Cruz Rivera said that despite having one of the fastest growing economies in the nation, Arizona’s associate, bachelor’s and graduate educational attainment rates fall far behind the rest of the nation.
He said the innovative coalition should dramatically boost statewide postsecondary attainment in areas that were aligned with high-demand and high-paying jobs that fuel the Arizona economy.
YCF President Lisa Rhine sees the alliance as yet another opportunity to impact the lives of students by expanding the education workforce to be valued contributors to the future financial viability of the state.
“We see this as another opportunity to positively benefit our students,” she said.