College Enrollments Declined This Fall For Fifth Straight Year

By  //  December 21, 2016

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total fall enrollment down 1.4 percent

(FOX BUSINESS NEWS)– Despite aggressive efforts nationwide to boost the number of people who attend college, enrollments declined this fall for the fifth straight year as better job prospects for older potential students and a stalled pipeline of new high-school graduates were compounded by continued woes in the for-profit college sector.

Total fall-term undergraduate and graduate enrollment slid by 1.4 percent to 19.01 million students as of the beginning of this month, according to the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, a nonprofit education organization.

Enrollment peaked at nearly 20.6 million in 2011.

The undergraduate student count fell by 1.9 percent, to 16.3 million this term, while graduate-student enrollment rose by 1.5 percent to 2.71 million.

Students over age 24 account for almost the entire overall decline, as adults who may consider returning to school to boost their career prospects are finding jobs instead.

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