Renovations to the downtown Evans building, shown in December, are drawing to a close. The building will be part of Spartanburg Community College's new downtown campus.
ALEX C. HICKS JR | Spartanburg Herald-Journal
The timeline for completion of the Evans Academic Center renovations was given to the Spartanburg County Commission for Technical and Community Education at its May meeting, held Monday at the school's central campus.
Commissioners also approved a slight tuition increase and approved a name change for the school's manufacturing program.
Ray Switzer, SCC's vice president of business affairs, said renovations on the downtown Evans Building are drawing to a close.
Switzer said work on the building's third floor should finish the first full week in June, with work on the second and first floors finishing later that month.
The school should begin moving furniture into the building the last week of the month and could have a certificate of occupancy by July 3, he said.
Other work, including resurfacing of a parking lot and landscaping, is scheduled to begin this week.
“You'll see a lot of progress down there,” said Switzer, who noted the $3.8 million project was within budget and on-schedule.
Switzer noted the costs of staffing the building in another presentation to the commission, when he asked for an additional increase for next year's tuition.
The commission unanimously approved a 3.16 percent increase in tuition compared to this year, replacing a 1.7 percent increase that was approved in March.
Switzer said the 3.16 percent was the most the college could increase its tuition under guidelines set by the Senate Finance Committee.
Commissioner Whit Kennedy noted that even with the increase, SCC was far below the statewide tuition cap, and was more affordable than Greenville Technical College.
Kennedy said it was important to take whatever increase the state allows because of the system of only allowing percent increases.
“If we don't get what [Senate Finance Committee Chairman Hugh] Leatherman gives us, it'll be compounded,” Kennedy said. “When we leave that percentage line on the table … we're that far behind.”
Commissioner Bill Surratt said he preferred the idea of making tuition as affordable as possible, “rather than getting as much as we can from the students,” but the commission ultimately approved the increase unanimously.
“We're still a bargain, even now,” said commissioner Gary Towery.
The increase will bring in-state tuition to $3,840 a year or $1,920 a semester, from $3,720 and $1,860, respectively. It will increase out-of-state tuition to $7,856 a year or $3,928 a semester from $7,616 and $3,808, Switzer said.
SCC President Henry Giles said the school remained a bargain, even with the increase.
Those students who qualify for lottery tuition assistance, he said, would only need to pay about $800 a semester.
In other business, commissioners approved a change to the school's Industrial and Engineering Technology Division.
Cheryl Cox, SCC vice president of academic affairs, said the new name would be the Advanced Manufacturing and Industrial Technologies Division.
The part of the East Building housing the programs was also renamed the Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Industrial Technologies, or CAMIT.
Cox said the change recommended after a series of meetings with faculty in the division and better reflects SCC's changing coursework and emphases.
“The original name, years ago, was perfectly adequate,” Giles said. “But it's not the manufacturing of your parents or grandparents age.”
Cox said the new name would help to better categorize the programs within the division.
“We need our students to be able to find our programs,” she said.