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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Lyndon Carlson, Sr. (DFL)

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COMPACT INCREASES HIGHER EDUCATION OPPORTUNITIES

Wednesday, October 19, 2005
To the Editor: With early application deadlines for most higher education institutions less than two months away, many high school seniors are deciding where to send applications. When thinking about cost, our public technical and community colleges and state universities are at the top of the list. Most people also know about Minnesota's reciprocity agreements with Wisconsin and the Dakotas that allow residents to share in-state tuition at public institutions. These are all great opportunities for an affordable post-secondary education. There is another way to save tuition costs and expand opportunities. I serve on Minnesota's delegation to the Midwest Higher Education Commission (MHEC); one of our key goals is to improve access to education for students in the Midwest. As part of that goal, there is an agreement that students in Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and Wisconsin can enroll in certain programs at participating schools and be charged no more than 150 percent of the resident tuition rate. This agreement gives students the opportunity to enroll in programs that may not be offered in their home states without the burden of out-of-state tuition. For example, a student from Minnesota could attend a participating school in Missouri, a state without a full reciprocity agreement, and avoid paying the full non-resident tuition rate. MHEC also helps higher education institutions negotiate lower insurance rates to keep operating costs down. We are continuing to work on measures to cut expenses in an effort to avoid high tuition increases. If you would like more information on MHEC and the tuition agreement go to the Commission's website at www.mhec.org. You can also contact my office at 651-296-4255 for more information. Sincerely, Rep. Lyndon Carlson District 45B -30-
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