Full New Century funding restored

The Utah Board of Regents was pleased to announce that the New Century Scholarship Program (NSCP) will be fully funded. The recently sent letter contained information about the percentage of tuition to be paid for the 2009-2010 academic year.

New Century was created to pay for 75 percent of tuition over two years for students who earned an associate’s degree before graduating from high school.
In early Aug., after the purview of the state Board of Regents, the NCSP was slashed from 75 percent of tuition to 40 percent.

“The NCS was one of the driving reasons I attended the Utah County Academy of Sciences since I knew if I followed their program I would have my bachelors basically paid off,” said Daniel Carpenter, a senior at UCAS. “I was really disappointed when I found out it dropped below 50 percent.”

Early college high schools across Utah, such as the Utah County Academy of Sciences (UCAS), strive to have all of their students receive their associates when they graduate. Students on UVU campus and parents were in uproar about the drop in funding. A Facebook group titled “We’re NOT okay with New Century and Regent Scholarship Cuts” was created for those who were affected by the drop.

“We did receive a lot of phone calls with concerned parents and students but most understood there was nothing we could do,” said Carl Nielson, counselor and director of Student Services at UCAS. “They talked with their legislators, the board of regents and President Sederburg.”

It was this communication between students and parents and legislators and legislators with Governor Herbert that restored the scholarship.

Though this dramatic decrease in funding may have been caused by budget shortfalls related to the tanking economy, Clark Baron, principal at UCAS, speculates there may have been more factors.

“The Board of Regents never researched how many kids were working on their associates in hopes to get the NCS. They thought they could use the same amount of money to divide between more students applying for the scholarship.”

His opinion is supported by the fact that in the 2008-2009 year 40 percent of all NCS were awarded to early college high school students. UCAS, just one of many in a flourishing niche school system, has experienced a nearly 30 percent increase in students since their first year in 2005.

To receive the NCS students must take the necessary number of college credit hours each semester and take only courses that will count towards their A.A. of A.S. degree or the math and science curriculum. Students must complete the degree or curriculum by September 1st of the year their class graduates from a Utah high school and maintain a 3.0 GPA.

The New Century Scholarship award amount is subject to availability of funding and number of qualified applicants and is not guaranteed. The exact award amount for the 2010-2011 academic year is yet to be determined given the state’s uncertain fiscal situation. It is anticipated that the percentage of tuition paid for the 2010-2011 academic year will be determined during the next legislative session.

For more information or to apply for the scholarship visit www.UtahNewCentury.org

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