PCC announces tuition freeze, employee raises

PUEBLO – Students and employees at Pueblo Community College received some positive financial news for the upcoming academic year.

First, there will be no tuition increase for PCC students during the 2021-22 school year. PCC is part of the Colorado Community College System, governed by the State Board for Community Colleges and Occupational Education. The SBCCOE voted in April to maintain the current tuition rate at all 13 CCCS schools for the upcoming year.

“The pandemic has hit our students particularly hard,” said Joe Garcia, CCCS chancellor. “Our state board, recognizing that we cannot ask our students and their families to shoulder a greater share of the burden during these difficult times, made the wise but difficult decision to freeze tuition for the upcoming academic year. Our colleges are the most affordable, accessible options to obtain a high-quality education and workforce training – and we intend to keep it that way.”

Second, PCC’s final 2021-22 budget was approved by the SBCCOE and includes a 3 percent raise for all employees effective July 1. 

“It was important to us to recognize the tremendous work our team has done over the past 15 months, often above and beyond their typical workload,” said PCC President Patty Erjavec. “We could not have navigated these rough waters without their commitment.”

Erjavec also said most of the open positions that weren’t able to be filled in the midst of the pandemic will be restored, enabling the college to better serve students as they return. PCC’s emphasis in the coming year will be to increase enrollment to pre-pandemic levels, she said. 

Erjavec commended the Colorado General Assembly for its commitment to restoring higher education funding to its original 2020 level and noted that PCC’s budget is expected to remain stable.

“Because we were mindful and disciplined throughout the pandemic, there is not a need to make additional budget cuts for this coming academic year,” she said.

PCC campuses are fully open for the summer term and fall classes are expected to take place on a normal operating schedule.

“We look forward to having people back on campus but we are prepared to meet our students wherever they need to be,” Erjavec said. “We’ll continue to emphasize the PCC Flex model that allows students to attend classes in person or virtually to accommodate their lives.”