Bad news for colleges nationwide. Enrollment numbers are on the decline and they don't appear to be turning around anytime soon.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, overall there were 467,000 fewer students enrolled in U.S. colleges between 2011 and 2012. But interestingly, the numbers varied by ethnic group. Enrollment numbers for white students are on the decline, while the numbers for Latino students are continuing an upward trend.
The census report found that the percentage of all college students who were white fell from 67 percent in 2006 to 58 percent last year. And experts think those numbers will just continue falling. But last year, the number of Latino students hit 3.4 million — an all-time high. And unlike their white peers, these numbers are on the rise. The percentage of all college students who were Latino grew from 11 percent in 2006 to 17 percent last year. And considering that almost 25 percent of all elementary students in the country are now Latino, it seems likely that college enrollment numbers for Latino kids will only continue to increase.
Despite this upturn, college enrollment in general is still declining. Experts cite a recovering economy and ridiculously high college tuition prices as two reasons that many folks are simply opting out of the traditional college degree.
So which colleges are seeing those declining numbers? A recent story in the New York Times found that while last year's declining enrollment seemed to primarily hit community colleges, all types of colleges, including traditional four-year colleges, have noted enrollment declines for the 2013-14 school year. This even after some colleges spent the summer actively trying to find more students to fill their classroom seats.
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