FSCJ considers low-cost degree plan in field of logistics

College president meets with Gov. Scott on plan for $10K degrees

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - More Florida colleges are jumping on board Gov. Rick Scott's idea of offering low-cost degrees, and it now looks like Florida State College at Jacksonville is considering the plan.

The governor wants community and state colleges to develop four-year degrees that would not cost more than $10,000.

It's costing student Edmund Green a small fortune to attend FSCJ. He's lucky to have financial aid, but says for many, college education is still out of reach and the governor's plan is the boost many need.

"I think it's a good idea because most people want to better themselves with education, and sometimes they have other obligations that slow them down," Green said.

On the average, a four-year degree at FSCJ costs more than $13,000. Scott wants to drop that to $10,000 for some specific degrees at state colleges.

Outgoing FSCJ President Steve Wallace spoke about that plan Wednesday. He said he met with the governor Tuesday night, and they talked about offering a $10,000 degree in logistics, a field involving moving supplies and equipment from point A to B and an area where Jacksonville is an industry leader.

For that reason, Wallace said the college could hold down cost by taking advantage of that.

"What we will be able to do there is manage the faculty cost by using current practitioners, professionals that are in the field, they love to teach, as adjunct faculty they are much less expensive, and also with corporate support," Wallace said.

Wallace talked about his plan on national TV on Wednesday. He was asked by CNN if businesses would respect a degree offered at a discounted price.

"Employers will look past prestige in many, many cases," he said. "They are very, very serious about the capabilities and competency the applicant has, and we do a very good job of preparing those students for the professional roles."

Students are listening, but some say they would have to do much more research to see if it's worth the investment.

"I would definitely look into it, of course, before I would put myself into it," student Ariel Bowen said.

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