The community college enrollment boom prediction didn’t happen this fall

Remember that big community college enrollment boom many predicted for this fall?

Reported by Education Dive, it didn’t happen. In fact, community college enrollment fell 7.5% year-over-year, the biggest decrease out of any institution type.

The early prediction was based on the fact that, if students weren’t going to be able to have a “traditional” college experience at a 4-year institution anyway, they may just decide to choose the least expensive online option possible, that often being through a local community college.

But the reality is that community colleges tend to enroll more low-income and underrepresented students, the students most negatively economically impacted by the pandemic.

The takeaway? With state budget cuts and additional tuition revenue losses, community colleges may unfortunately end up some of the worst hit institutions from the pandemic.

May you continue to fight the good enrollment growth fight at your institution today, and we’ll see you again tomorrow.

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Eric Olsen

Eric brings more than a decade of award-winning creative brand development, marketing analytics and higher education experience to Helix Education. Eric is a graduate of Bradley University and earned his MBA at Lewis University.