Some out-of-state students attending colleges in Connecticut are getting a deal.
Enrollment is down at some of the state’s community colleges, so now Massachusetts students are paying what Connecticut students pay at one community college.
Asnuntuck Community College in Enfield was seeing a significant drop in enrollment, about 34 percent, but they didn’t have to look far to find more students.
“It seems like the job market is plentiful more positions than people, qualified people to fill them so this program here is great,” said Ezra Bloom, of Massachusetts, who is taking manufacturing classes at Asnuntuck.
Massachusetts students who want to attend Asnuntuck are now paying what Connecticut students pay.
Out-of-state tuition is $6,068 per semester, and in-state is $2,036.
The pilot program started this year and the school has seen an increase of 50 students from Massachusetts.
"We are seeing a 1.8 percent drop in high school students, so we are looking more at non-traditional approaches. We’ve always considered western Massachusetts as part of our region,” said Asnuntuck President James Lombella.
He said it is a winning situation. Their enrollment is up and more students are able to get a better education.
"We are not the first in the nation to do this. As a matter of fact, we are behind the curve and we are seeing great results,” said Mark Ojakian, president of the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities system.
"I am paying for it out of pocket, and I am getting a government loan. So anything that can help lower that loan when I get into the workforce helps,” Bloom said.
Only Asnuntuck is doing this program right now, however starting next year, Western Connecticut State University in Danbury will be doing something similar with students from New York.
In that case, it won't be all New York, but only students in seven counties near the Connecticut border.
Copyright 2016 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.