Students to voice opinions in Austin

JASMINE CHAPPELL
Staff Writer

A 10-member student delegation will represent KC at the biennial Community College Day Tuesday in Austin. The event will include meetings with area state legislators and a tour of the House and Senate Chambers.

Dr. Bill Holda, KC president and board chairman of the Texas Association of Community Colleges, will also participate.

Community College Day gathers students from Texas community colleges and allows them to discuss their overall educational experience.

According to the Texas Junior College Student Government Association, students will have an opportunity to voice their concerns about increased tuition and topics such as grants and scholarships that have not kept pace with costs and why community colleges should be adequately funded due to increased enrollment.

More than 750,000 students were enrolled in Texas public community colleges during Fall 2012, compared to the 560,000 students at public Texas universities and 123,000 students at independent colleges and universities, according to the TJCSGA website. These figures represent 52 percent of all Texans enrolled in post-secondary education.

Seventy percent of all first-time college students in Texas begin their college education at a community college.

Community colleges are known to be more convenient and affordable, but  with state budget cuts some students are prolonging their education because they cannot keep up with the costs.

“Some students cannot afford the same opportunities as other students who attend universities,” said Tashia Adams, Crowley sophomore and KC Student Government Association president. “Community colleges can help students transfer to universities without putting their education on hold.”

The TJCSGA has created a Texas Association of Community Colleges five-point campaign  for the 83rd Session of the Texas Legislature that assures students will become transfer and workforce ready.

“The decisions made in Austin will impact the costs and quality of education students receive at community colleges,” said Edward Williams, residential life director. “I hope the students realize that their involvement in the political process matters.”

KC’S CAPITAL DELEGATION

  • Tashia Adams – Crowley
  • NaKeya Callaway – Mesquite
  • Kris Dobbins – Kilgore
  • Jessica Espinosa – Overton
  • Ashton Johnson – Kilgore
  • Dustin Kincaide – Longview
  • Carnelius Lewis – Carthage
  • Sammie Jo Oller – Gilmer
  • Jackson Threadgill – Henderson
  • Morris Williams II – Antioch, Tenn.
  • Edward Williams – residential life director
  • Ross Costanzo –  student life assistant director

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