Low enrollment prompts program cuts



The Patrick Henry Community College Board on Monday unanimously approved discontinuing several programs, primarily due to low enrollment.

Programs slated to be cut include Business Technology: Major Management AAS, with a specialization in Agribusiness.

The program has suffered from “extremely low enrollment,” according to board documents. In the last four years, fewer than 10 students have graduated, and only nine active students are currently enrolled, according to board documents.

Career Study Certificate programs also will be discontinued. They include Horticulture; Vitaculture; Building Trades; Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC); Auto Body Technology and Automotive Technology.

Enrollment in those programs ranges from zero to nine students, according to board documents.

Affected students will be offered a ‘teach-out,’ which will allow them to complete the certificate or transfer to a different program of study, according to board documents.

Also on Monday, the board approved increasing student activity fees, from $1.94 to $2.24 per semester hour.

Student activity fees currently are used to fund 21 different student clubs and organizations. The college has supplemented student activity fees from auxiliary funds to avoid discontinuing student activities. However, the college reached the point that student activities would be discontinued without the increase.

A student referendum was conducted on the proposed fee increase, and it was approved by a majority of votes, board documents stated.