This fall, more than 20 million students are expected to return to college, a 24 percent increase from 2000. Still, the enrollment surge doesn’t mean that all colleges have gotten more popular. Some expensive private colleges have experienced significant drops in the number of high school seniors applying, according to a recent report. Elite Boston College has suffered the biggest plunge.
Ninety percent of the overall decline in enrollment was from students over 25.
For the first time in six years the number of college students has declined, according to new Census figures released this week. The half-a-million-student drop is “a huge decline,” Census Bureau statistician Julie Siebens told me. This sounds like bad news, but it could actually be a sign of good news. It means the labor market is — slowly, but surely — getting better.
We should want more college graduates. But we should also want fewer students at colleges with high drop-out rates.
During the Great Recession college enrollments went up. Since 2012, college enrollment has gone down. According to the National Student Clearinghouse, Spring 2013 enrollments fell 2.3 percent from last year. The drop-off has sped up since the Fall.
There is a jump in the number of computer science enrollments.
Computer science enrollments have increased for the third year. This ends the decline in enrollments that followed the bursting of the dot-com bubble in 2000-2001. But it could be years before enrollments reach the high of the dot-com booms.