Executive Summary – December 2016 Quarterly Meeting
Page 5 of 10
of our regional market area. The impetus for this action is also recent actions taken by other states
bordering ETSU’s current service area. For example, the North Carolina Promise tuition plan allows
Western Carolina University to offer out-of-state students a tuition rate of $2,500 per semester.
Border restrictions truncate ETSU’s regional impact and adversely affects higher education decisions
by not affording prospective students the opportunity to consider ETSU as their university of choice.
At the same time issues of proximity and location have been identified as an influential factor in
students’ selection of an institution of higher education. A majority of students attend institutions
within 50-100 miles of their hometowns.
ETSU, with its strong mission of dedicated service to the Appalachian Region, provides an important
opportunity for positively impacting the proposed five-state area. The population of the region is
underserved by higher education and has a low percentage of the population who are college educated.
The growth of industry, commerce, educational attainment and the quality of life within this region are
directly related to the services and educational offerings provided by ETSU to its multi-state region.
In addition, the University believes it can—by this action—capitalize on recognition of the
distinctiveness of its programs.
Currently ETSU can admit residents of eleven counties in North Carolina and Virginia at in-state
maintenance rates. The current request is to extend the in-state maintenance rate to counties within a
100-mile radius of ETSU. The action proposed would extend ETSU’s current geographical footprint
and would include the following states and counties.
Bell, Breathitt, Clay, Floyd, Harlan, Johnson, Knott, Knox, Laurel, Leslie,
Letcher, Magoffin, Martin, Owsley, Perry Pike, Whitley
NC Alexander, Alleghany, Buncombe, Burke, Caldwell, Catawba, Cleveland,
Gaston, Graham, Henderson, Iredell, Jackson, Lincoln, Macon, McDowell,
Polk, Rutherford, Swain, Surry, Transylvania, Wilkes, Yadkin
SC Cherokee, Greeneville, Oconee, Spartanburg, Pickens, Rabun
VA Bland, Buchanan, Carroll, Dickenson, Russell, Smyth, Tazewell, Wise,
WV Logan, McDowell, Mercer, Mingo, Wyoming
The current request to extend the in-state tuition rate to students who live in any county within a 100-
mile radius of ETSU would allow us to expand our geographic footprint in the region and also to
enhance enrollment at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. The risk for taking this action is
minimal in that an analysis of the financial impact of creating the 100-mile radius indicates that we
would only need to enroll an additional 90 students (12 hours each term) for two semesters to cover the
loss of out-of-state tuition that students within this radius are currently paying. The financial impact of
not enrolling an additional 90 students has been discussed with President Noland. President Noland
acknowledged that if an additional 90 students were not enrolled, budgeted expenditures would be
reduced to cover the revenue shortfall.