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Community Colleges Freeze Tuition

Published Monday Jul 19, 2021

Community Colleges Freeze Tuition

The trustees of the Community College System of NH (CCSNH) voted to freeze tuition at $215 per credit, or $6,450 per year, in tuition costs for a full-time course load. The rate has remained unchanged for four years, reflecting the colleges’ commitment to affordability and access for NH students. CCSNH colleges also remain the most affordable college option in NH.

“Our message to New Hampshire families is that high-quality college education is within reach at colleges that are designed to support a broad range of aspirations, from entry into valuable and meaningful careers and to continuing education,” said Kathy Bogle Shields, chair of CCSNH’s board of trustees. “Across the state and region, our graduates are doing well and making a significant and critical difference in their communities.”

Annual full-time tuition at NH’s seven community colleges costs only $150 more than it did a decade ago when the tuition rate was $210 per credit for the 2011 school year. A press release noted the college system has "worked aggressively to control costs and keep higher education affordable for students and families, as part of its mission to ensure NH residents have affordable opportunities for higher education in their communities and state."

According to the PR department, 93% of CCSNH students are NH residents, and the vast majority of graduates remain in the state as part of NH’s workforce. 

“We appreciate the work of the NH Legislature and Governor to help us keep tuition affordable,” said Susan Huard, CCSNH interim chancellor. “Our graduates’ track record of employment and economic mobility is part of what makes New Hampshire a resilient and vibrant state.

NH’s community colleges offer associate degree programs that align with student demand and employment opportunities, such as business, nursing and other health care professions, hospitality, social sciences, industrial trades, STEM and information technology, public safety, advanced manufacturing and more. The colleges also offer liberal arts programs that give students a foundation for continuing their education at the baccalaureate level at their choice of numerous transfer destinations, including schools within the University System of NH, Southern NH University, and many more. The colleges also offer short-term programs that help students enter professions in a year or less with state-of-the-art skills and knowledge.

“For students who thrive in a setting with small classes, personal attention, and instructors who bring real-world knowledge to the classroom, there are no better options to consider than one of New Hampshire’s seven community colleges,” said Shields. “Our colleges meet rigorous accreditation standards from the same organizations that accredit New England’s four-year colleges and universities. We are strongly focused on the success of our students and in making sure our graduates have the skills to be in demand in a changing economy.”  

In addition to freezing tuition, CCSNH is working with current and incoming students eligible for federal COVID-relief  grants. And as a special recognition of the effect that the pandemic had on this year’s high school graduating seniors, the NH Charitable Foundation and the Foundation for NH Community Colleges teamed up to raise funds to provide one free, three-credit course in the fall semester to any member of a NH high school class of ’21. Details can be found at

Enrollment for the fall semester at NH’s seven community college is ongoing up until the start of the semester on August 30. Late-start courses also begin in September and October for those seeking additional flexibility. CCSNH expects to have a full slate of on-campus operations this fall, and also offers online course options for the convenience of students.

CCSNH consists of seven colleges: Great Bay Community College in Portsmouth and Rochester; Lakes Region Community College in Laconia; Manchester Community College; Nashua Community College; NHTI – Concord’s Community College; River Valley Community College in Claremont, Lebanon and Keene; and White Mountains Community College in Berlin, Littleton and North Conway.   

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