“There was an increase in grad students, by 124,000 students, which cushioned the blow.”
The effects of the pandemic on higher education are going to be major, and we’re only seeing the beginning of it now.
The College Fix reports:
Undergrad enrollment takes huge hit, down 727,000 students
Enrollment in American colleges and universities nosedived this spring, with a decline of 603,000 students from the previous school year, or 3.5 percent, according to data from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center.
Those larger numbers, if anything, undersell the decline and its potential long-term effects to higher education.
There was an increase in grad students, by 124,000 students, which cushioned the blow.
What that means according to the National Student Clearinghouse is that “Undergraduate students accounted for all of the decline, with a 4.9 percent drop or 727,000 students.”
Colleges and universities saw fewer undergrads enrolled almost across the board, but “community colleges remain hardest hit,” the research center reported.
In fact, “Over 65 percent of the total undergraduate enrollment losses occurred in the community college sector.”
Community colleges, which feature prominently in President Biden’s plans to give some free college to all Americans, had 467,000 fewer students enrolled, for a 9.5 percent decline.
Enrollment among college students of a traditional age range of 18 to 24 fell the most, largely due to the community college dropoff.
Male potential students declined to register in larger numbers than future female students.
There were “400,000 fewer male students and 203,000 fewer female students compared with last spring,” the research center reported.
The National Student Clearinghouse chalked up these declines to “the persistent impact of COVID-19 related disruptions,” a statement that is true in a few senses.
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