- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 22, 2014

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - In a story April 22 about college transfer students, The Associated Press misstated the first name of a former chancellor of the University System of New Hampshire. He is Edward MacKay, not Jim MacKay.

A corrected version of the story is below:

Colleges: Transfer students are out-of-staters

High percentage of out-of-staters may explain college transfer trend in New Hampshire, Vermont

By HOLLY RAMER

Associated Press

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - As college students prepare to leave New Hampshire and Vermont for summer break, a recent national study raises questions about how many will return in the fall.

While both states rank very high in terms of the percentage of students who graduate within six years of starting at four-year public campuses, they also rank high in terms of students who finish in another state, according to the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center.

Its March report found that nationally, 6 percent of students who started at a four-year college in 2007 and completed their degrees by last year did so in a different state than where they began. New Hampshire and Vermont were among a dozen states where more than 10 percent of students took that path - in New Hampshire, it was 11 percent, and in Vermont, 13 percent.

Edward MacKay spent nearly four decades at the University System of New Hampshire, including 22 years as vice chancellor and four as chancellor before he retired last year. He says those numbers likely reflect the fact that the residential institutions that make up the university system each enroll at least 40 percent of their undergraduate population from outside New Hampshire. Those students pay considerably higher tuition, he said, and may be unable to afford it for their entire education.

“Thus, as many families continued to struggle through the recovery from the Great Recession, some - and particularly out-of-state students - made a financially driven decision to enroll elsewhere, and in many cases as in-state students in their home states,” said MacKay, who now heads the state Department of Education’s higher education division.

At the largest campus - the University of New Hampshire in Durham - 43 percent of this year’s undergraduate students are from out of state. The percentage is even higher at the University of Vermont, where 68 percent of the students come from out of state.

“We know that for UVM, many out-of-state students come from other states in the Northeast, and it is not uncommon for them to have applied and been admitted to their less expensive in-state options,” said John Ryan, director of the university’s Office of Institutional Research.

In-state tuition and fees at UNH totaled $16,500 this year, compared to $29,200 for out-of-state students. The University of Vermont charged in-state students $15,700 in tuition and fees, compared to $36,600 for nonresidents.

It’s unclear whether fewer students are crossing state lines since the economy improved.

Story Continues →