Indiana Group Pushes College Completion for Holidays
By: Lakeshore Staff
November 26, 2014 — As Hoosier college students gather around the dinner table with their families this Thanksgiving, the Indiana Commission for Higher Education would like to suggest a dinner conversation topic: 15 to Finish. The Commission is reminding full time college students who expect to graduate on time that they should be registering now for 15 credit hours for the spring 2015 semester.
Data show that students who complete 15 or more credits per semester are not only more likely to graduate on time; they also earn better grades and save money on their degrees. For Indiana’s financial aid recipients, timely completion is especially important since state aid only pays for four years of college. The amount of aid the students receive from the state depends on the number of credits they complete each year. To earn the maximum amount of aid, students must progress at an on-time pace.
“We know that many Indiana college students expect to graduate on time, but only half are taking enough courses each semester to do so,” said Teresa Lubbers, Indiana Commissioner for Higher Education. “Hoosiers should know that if on time graduation is their goal, they should be taking and completing 15 college credits each semester or 30 credits in an academic year.”
Based on a successful initiative developed by the University of Hawaii system which saw a 15 percent increase in the number of students taking 15 credits in its first year, Indiana’s 15 to Finish campaign aims to change the longstanding perception that taking 12 credits per semester is enough to graduate on time.
There are already early signs of success in the Indiana 15 to Finish campaign that are capturing national attention, with programs enrolling students in 15 credits or more each semester. The Indiana Commission for Higher Education will release a comprehensive report in January 2015 that will highlight recent trends in course taking for Indiana public institutions.