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Volume 9, Issue 8 - November 2017

In This Issue:


SCICU Preparing for 2018 Legislative Session

The second regular session of the 122nd South Carolina General Assembly will begin on January 9, 2018. SCICU's Public Policy Committee is preparing the 2018 Legislative Strategic Plan to address issues related to the FY 2018-19 state budget and a long list of pending legislation.

Securing an additional $3.1 million for the Tuition Grants Program is the first legislative priority for SCICU.  SCICU's Public Policy Committee will meet on November 8 to address this priority and others in the proposed 2018 Legislative Strategic Plan. 

Tuition Grants are need-based grants available to South Carolina residents who attend in-state, private non-profit colleges or universities. The South Carolina Tuition Grants Commission has requested the additional $3.1 million from the General Assembly in order to increase the maximum individual student award from $3,200 to $3,350 for the academic year beginning in August 2018.

The second priority of proposed 2018 legislative plan supports full funding for the state's merit-based scholarship programs (Palmetto Fellows, LIFE, and HOPE). This year the state merit-based scholarship programs cost an estimated $300 million. These programs are funded primarily by the Education Lottery. Unless changes are made to the programs' eligibility or award criteria, scholarship funding may have to increase by as much as $20.4 million to accommodate an additional 8,000 students who will qualify under the second year phase-in of the high school grading policy which changed to a 10-point scale from a 7-point scale in 2016.

SCICU also supports the Commission on Higher Education's request for an increase of $1 million in a need-based grant programs for public college students and $1.5 million for the Partnership Among South Carolina's Academic Libraries (PASCAL).

The state's Board of Economic Advisers meets next week to release its first revenue estimate for next year's budget. While revenues have generally been up, new revenue will not be enough to cover the growing demand for government services and programs. In addition to outstanding needs identified by state agencies and public colleges and universities, legacy needs like funding for teacher and public employee pay raises, schools in the I-95 corridor, an underfunded state pension system, and local governments must be addressed. The competition for scarce general appropriation and lottery dollars has never been greater.

SCICU will host the Campus Legislative Coordinators on December 8 for the annual Legislative Advocacy kick-off meeting and luncheon at the Capital City Club. The Campus Legislative Coordinators are responsible for organizing their college's grant recipients for writing thank-you letters to state legislators and for attending the annual State House Day rally. During the 2016-17 academic year, students wrote more than 8,200 personal thank-you letters to SC legislators, and almost 100 staff and students from 18 SCICU member colleges and universities participated in the 2017 Independent Colleges and Universities State House Day.


2017-2018 SCICU Digital College Guide  Now Available Online

SCICU's 2017-18 College Guide is now available online! This digital guide to twenty independent colleges and universities in South Carolina is designed for easy viewing on mobile devices ( and it's easy to share with friends, too!).

The guide includes detailed scholarship and financial aid info, and is full of other tips to help parents and students choose the college or university that best suits their higher education needs.

Please click here to access SCICU's 2017-18 Digital College Guide.


Allen University to Host Spring  SCICU  Board of Trustees Meeting March 14, 2018

Allen University will host the next SCICU Board of Trustees meeting on March 14, 2018.

The Spring Board Meeting will by preceded by the Council of College Presidents breakfast and meeting 9:00 - 10:00 am.

Presidents will join at-large trustees for the business meeting at 10:30 am in historic Chappelle Auditorium.  

The initial "Save the Date" info and online registration links have been sent to member college/university presidents and all at-large trustees. Additional information regarding the Board meeting will follow at a later date.

Please click here for additional information regarding SCICU's Spring 2018 Board Meeting.


Dr. Mark A. Smith
President, Columbia International University

CIU to Inaugurate Dr. Mark Smith
As Seventh President November 3

COLUMBIA, SC  - The inauguration of Dr. Mark A. Smith as the seventh president of Columbia International University will take place November 3. The ceremony will be held in Shortess Chapel on the campus of CIU beginning at 11a.m. Smith has been serving as president of CIU since July 1 after being approved by the CIU Board of Trustees in February.

Early in his college career, Smith committed his life to Christian higher education administration, a path he has faithfully followed for over two decades.

Smith comes to CIU from Ohio Christian University (OCU) where he served as president for 11 years, increasing enrollment from 400 to approximately 4,600 students during his tenure. Prior to coming to OCU, Smith served as vice president for adult and graduate studies at Indiana Wesleyan University where he oversaw the doubling of enrollment from approximately 5,000 to 10,000 students in four years. Smith also has experience in Pre-K to 12th grade education, having served as principal of Bible Fellowship Christian School in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Since Smith became president of CIU, the school has added a fully online MBA, as well as fully online bachelor's and associate degrees in business. In addition, CIU has announced $22 million in facility expansions with the largest portion dedicated to a $15-20 million Business and IT Global Initiative Center.

The inaugural address will be given by Dr. Ralph Enlow Jr., president of the Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE), and the 2017 CIU Alumnus of the Year. Enlow served as an educational leader at CIU for 28 years, including six years as senior vice president and provost.

Presiding over the inauguration will be The Honorable J. Ronald Mullins Jr., vice-chairman of the CIU Board of Trustees and a Georgia Superior Court judge. The public is invited to attend. CIU is located at 7435 Monticello Road in Columbia.

The inauguration is a part of CIU's 2017 Homecoming celebration Nov. 3-4.

Please click here to read the CIU news release on the SCICU website.


SCICU curates news from its twenty member colleges and universities. Click here to read college news on the SCICU website.

The following is a sampling of recent member college news:

Claflin University And Furman University

Coker College
Columbia College
Columbia International University

Converse College

Furman University

Limestone College

Newberry College

Southern Wesleyan University

Wofford College




The Business Partners program provides a convenient marketplace in which SCICU member colleges and universities can preview offerings tailored to the needs of the higher education community in South Carolina.

SCICU recognizes the following Business Partner for their renewal:

Directory - Click  here  for a complete list of Business Partners, or access information on individual Business Partners via the links shown below.

ABM Building Solutions, LLC  | Acumen IT, LLC | Affinity LTC, LLC (Genworth Financial) Aramark Higher Education | Cantey Tech Consulting CapinCrouse LLP | Church Mutual Insurance Company | Coleman Lew + Associates | Collegiate Financial Services (IOA) |  Craig Gaulden Davis | CSI Leasing, Inc. Elliott Davis  | Find Great People, LLC | First American Education Finance | Gillis Specialty Adverstising | Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, PA | Howard Techonology Solutions HRP Associates, Inc.  | Hypersign, LLC |  The LearningHouse, Inc. |  McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture | Metadata IT LLC Metz Culinary Management | Myers McRae Executive Search and Consulting | National Management Resources Corporation | P2Ops, LLCPaymerang (f/k/a AP Advantage)Pioneer College Caterers Pollock Company | Purple Briefcase |  S2K Group, Inc. | SC Student Loan Corporation | ScholarBuys | Sodexo | Spirit Communications | STEM Premier Total Comfort Solutions | UnitedHealthcare Student Resources | Vulcan Materials Company | Walsh Consulting Group LLC |  Wells Fargo Insurance Services Wyche, PA

SCICU is a member of the Coalition for College Cost Savings (CCCS). This organization, comprised of 33 member organizations in 30 states, serves more than 900 higher education institutions and over 3 million students across the United States. The organization and staff are dedicated to helping private higher education institutions improve processes and reduce costs through collaboration.

All SCICU member colleges and universities have access to CCCS's national contracts and services. More information on this important benefit may be found here.

News & Notes is published by the South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities, Inc.  Please send all comments or questions to SCICU President & CEO Mike LeFever at [email protected] or 803-799-7122.  Mailing address: PO Box 12007, Columbia, SC 29211.