“We suspect that we are finally seeing the COVID effect on enrollment that some expected to see last fall.”
Maybe these schools should just hire more diversity administrators. Surely, that will fix the problem.
The Pittsburgh Post Gazette reports:
Pa. State System university enrollment craters to lowest level in over 30 years
Pennsylvania’s 14 state-owned universities lost another 5,000-plus students this fall, dropping total head count enrollment below 89,000 — a level not seen in three-plus decades, dating nearly to the system’s founding — according to just released data Monday.
The 5.4% downturn and anticipated loss of more than $36 million in tuition revenue is likely to further complicate efforts to redesign the State System of Higher Education and merge six of its universities — California, Clarion and Edinboro in the west, plus Bloomsburg, Lock Haven and Mansfield in the northeast — into two institutions.
However, the drop from a year ago to a degree was anticipated — at least internally. While not offering a number, State System leaders, including Chancellor Daniel Greenstein, have warned groups including the state Legislature that the 2021-22 academic year would be a “very challenging” one for enrollment, citing factors such as the still-ongoing pandemic.
The system, founded in 1983, saw its enrollment peak at about 119,500 students in 2010. It since fell to less than 94,000 last year and now to 88,651 — lower than any year since at least 1988, according to a review of historical system data.
“We suspect that we are finally seeing the COVID effect on enrollment that some expected to see last fall. Our universities continue to pursue aggressive enrollment management and recruiting strategies in response to the trends we are seeing around the country,” State System spokesman Cody Jones said Monday, reacting to the new fall numbers.
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