Wednesday, September 4, 2013

U.S. Census: National College Enrollment Down in 2012

According to a report released by the Census Bureau yesterday, college enrollment in the Fall of 2012 plunged by half a million (467,000) from one year earlier. This decline, which includes both graduate and undergraduate enrollment, follows a period of substantial growth — 3.2 million — between 2006 and 2011.
This decline in college enrollment was driven by older students — that is, those 25 and older. Their enrollment fell by 419,000, while the enrollment of younger students declined by 48,000.
Hispanics didn't follow the trend, as the number enrolled in college grew by 447,000 from 2011 to 2012. Meanwhile, non-Hispanic white enrollment declined by 1.1 million and black enrollment by 108,000. From 2006 to 2012, the percentage of all college students who were Hispanic rose from 11 percent to 17 percent. The percentage who were black also rose (from 14 percent to 15 percent), but the percent of non-Hispanic white students declined from 67 percent to 58 percent.

Locally the number of persons enrolled in college according to the American Communities Survey (ACS)  is considerably higher than it was in the Census 2000. Whereas at the time of the 2000 Census approximately 6.4% of the population 18 and over in Herkimer County, and 7.1% of the population age 18 and over in Oneida County, were enrolled in college, the 2011 ACS Five Year Estimates see these percentages rising to 7.9% and 8.6%, respectively. In both cases (the Census 2000 and the 2011 ACS ) about 80% of Herkimer County college enrollees attend public colleges; while only 61% of college students from Oneida County chose public institutions of higher learning to continue their education.