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RichmondCC making changes to boost enrollment, retention

Richmond Community College’s Board of Trustees listen to a report about enrollment and changes that are going to be made to better advise students and help them be more successful in the classroom.

HAMLET — Richmond Community College is making changes to how students are assisted through the admissions process in order to better serve them and their educational needs.

Dr. Dale McInnis, president of RichmondCC, gave a report to the Board of Trustees on Tuesday about the number of students who apply but never enroll in classes. 

“We had 1,013 applicants for the fall semester, but only about 54 percent were actually enrolled,” McInnis said. “We started having a conversation about how we could do a better job of advising, registering and counseling our students.”

The Career & Transfer Advising Center will be the first point of contact for students as they begin the process of registering for classes. This staff will advise them on what classes to take according to their educational and career plans and continue to assist them as they complete their program of study.

Faculty members who had previously been serving as advisors to university transfer students will now focus on the success of their students in the classroom.

RichmondCC counselors, who also have played a major role in registering students in the past, will now shift their focus to counseling and the mental health of students.  

“We know that our students are facing a lot of challenges at home, school and work, especially those who missed the socialization and the human connectivity over the last couple of years,” McInnis said. “We want our counselors to be very proactive on working to get those students re-socialized and reconnected.”

McInnis also said the College will be focusing on absenteeism, which is a major cause for students withdrawing from classes. 

“Every time somebody is absent, our faculty and staff are not going to just take it for granted or just accept it. They are going to reach out to those students and indicate our care and concern for them,” McInnis said.

The College is also purchasing a new messaging software system to better connect with people via text messaging, which has become the preferred method of communication.

New Scholarships

Dr. Hal Shuler, who is over the College Foundation, informed the Board of Trustees about two new scholarships: the Homecoming Special and the Pee Dee Special.


The Homecoming Special will provide university students who are home for the summer a discount on tuition and fees for summer classes at RichmondCC. 

“We hope the Homecoming Special will encourage university students to take advantage of the many transferable classes we offer during the summer and save some money on their college education,” Shuler said.

The Pee Dee Special will allow qualified South Carolina students to pay RichmondCC’s affordable in-state tuition fees. RichmondCC’s in-state tuition fee is $100 less than the in-state tuition fee at bordering S.C. community colleges.

“This gives our neighboring South Carolina students more choices when it comes to college and the opportunity to enroll in some of the unique academic programs we offer at RichmondCC,” Shuler said.

In Other News

The Board of Trustees approved the 2022-2023 budget requests for both Richmond and Scotland County. Both budget requests were very similar to the previous year with minimal increases. The budget request for Richmond County will be $2,517368, and the budget request for Scotland County will be $507,045.

The Board also approved the 2022-2023 student fee schedule, which had no increases. It remains at $52.

Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Brent Barbee noted while many other colleges have increased their student activity fees, RichmondCC strives to not overburden its students with fees.

“Our fees are very, very reasonable,” Barbee said. “If they are not the lowest in state, they are probably one of the lowest.”

Other actions taken by the Board of Trustees was approving changes to the College’s Emergency Plan to include a policy for catastrophic events and approving ADW Architects to complete a Master Facilities Plan for the College. 


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