Council on Postsecondary Education
State report estimates college degrees, certificates up in Kentucky

Press Release Date:  Friday, June 20, 2014  
Contact Information:  Sue Patrick
502-573-1555
Cell: 502-330-6596
Sue.Patrick@ky.gov
 


A preliminary report issued today estimates that Kentucky’s public and private colleges and universities conferred 63,148 degrees and credentials during the 2013-14 academic year, representing an annual increase of 1.2 percent and a 10-year increase of 60 percent.

The statewide report showed growth at most levels, including undergraduate certificates, and degrees at the associate, baccalaureate and doctoral levels.

Council President Bob King said, “This is exceptionally good news for Kentucky. The hard work of our students is being rewarded, and our campuses are adding value by creating a more highly skilled workforce to strengthen Kentucky’s economy.”

One-year highlights:

  • Baccalaureate degrees are up 3.4 percent, with gains of 9.6 percent reported at the independent colleges and universities and 1.6 percent in the public sector.
  • Research doctorates increased 10.2 percent overall, while professional practice doctoral degrees nudged upward nearly 2 percent. This category includes newer programs such as advanced‐practice nursing, as well as law and many health‐related degrees.
  • Associate degrees increased nearly 3 percent, while undergraduate certificates climbed 2.2 percent.
  • However, master’s degree production is estimated to be down in both the public and private sectors, for an overall decrease of 6.8 percent.

Ten-year highlights:

  • The number of degrees conferred statewide has grown substantially at all levels.
  • Undergraduate certificates grew 204 percent and associate degrees increased 56 percent, a result of the expansion of applied associate programs at the Kentucky Community and Technical College System.
  • Professional‐practice doctoral degrees grew 46.5 percent and research/scholarship doctoral degrees climbed 42.9 percent at the state level, reflecting the expansion of Kentucky’s highly‐educated, professional workforce.
  • Baccalaureate degree production is up 30 percent since 2003-04.

The report was issued earlier today by the Council on Postsecondary Education at its meeting at Centre College. The final report will be issued later this year.

Tuition and mandatory fees

In other action, the Council approved tuition and mandatory fee rates for public four-year and two-year campuses for 2014-15, while Eastern Kentucky University and the Kentucky Community and Technical College System exercised the option to also submit rates for the following academic year.

All rates complied with the resident, undergraduate ceilings set by the Council in April, which was 5 percent in any one year and not to exceed 8 percent over two years for the four-year universities. For the Kentucky Community and Technical College System, the ceiling was set at $147 per credit hour in year one and $150 per credit hour in year two.

The Council set the following rates for resident, undergraduate students. The first percent listed is for the 2014-15 academic year.

  • Eastern Kentucky University, 5.1 percent, and 2.7 percent in 2015-16
  • Kentucky Community and Technical College System, 2.1 percent, and 2 percent in 2015-16
  • Kentucky State University, -0.7 percent (Decrease reflects transition from per-credit-hour pricing to flat-rate structure. See note following release.)
  • Morehead State University, 5 percent
  • Murray State University, 4.9 percent
  • Northern Kentucky University, 4.7 percent
  • University of Kentucky, 5 percent
  • University of Louisville, 5 percent
  • Western Kentucky University, 4.9 percent

The Council and the institutions will revisit the ceilings for 2015-16 should there be a change in net General Fund appropriations.

President King’s evaluation and other business

The Council also heard the results of President King’s annual evaluation, which showed very high performance.

Chair Pam Miller said, “Bob King is a strong leader and is doing an outstanding job across the board. We appreciate the quality work he is delivering and the increased performance of our campuses.”

King will not receive additional compensation nor has he since he became president in 2009. His contract runs through 2017.

In other business, the Council:

  • Approved nine academic programs, including:
    • Kentucky State University—master of arts in interdisciplinary behavioral science: psychology and law.
    • Murray State University--master of science in economic development and bachelor of science in health information administration.
    • University of Kentucky--master of fine arts in creative writing, bachelor of health studies in public health; master of science in information communication technology; bachelor of arts in health, society and populations; and bachelor of arts in writing, rhetoric and digital media.
    • Western Kentucky University--bachelor of arts in diversity and community studies.
  • Approved a request by the University of Kentucky to authorize the federally funded Center for Applied Energy Research (CAER) Slipstream capital project, with a project scope of $1.6 million.
  • Approved a new tuition reciprocity agreement with Tennessee, and changes to the agreement with Ohio.
  • Adopted the 2014-15 Council Work Plan.
  • Presented resolutions honoring Kentucky State University President Dr. Mary Sias, who is retiring, student Council member Glenn Means whose term expired, and staff member David Walters who resigned.

The Council heard the following reports: CPE President’s Report, Commissioner of Education Report, presentations from Northern Kentucky University and the Association of Kentucky Colleges and Universities, Funding Model Steering Committee, the Doctorate of Nursing Practice program at KSU, Committee on Equal Opportunities, and institutional reports were available.

The next meeting of the Council will be September 15-16 at Kentucky State University, Frankfort.

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Meeting materials are available at http://www.cpe.ky.gov/about/cpe/meetings/2014/default.htm.  

Note on KSU tuition

Kentucky State University transitioned from a per-credit-hour pricing structure to a flat-rate structure for 2014-15. The impact of the proposed change for full-time students taking 15 credit hours is negligible, - 0.7 percent. Part-time students will see their per-credit-hour charge increase by 11.8 percent, but this change allows the campus to achieve a more equitable price distribution between full-time and part-time students. Overall, the new pricing results in an enrollment weighted average rate increase of 5 percent for all resident undergraduate students.