- Research by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation offers a statistical profile of college students in America and includes details that may surprise some administrators about who they are serving.
- The report found 62% of students are working full- or part-time while pursuing their degrees, and nearly as many (59%) are commuting to class from off-campus residences. Two-thirds of all college students are full-time, non-Pell Grant eligible students who attend four-year institutions.
- The number of students who exclusively take courses online (13%) may also be surprising to some.
Data about commuter students and those who work full or part-time jobs provides a unique look into considerations campuses should make in student programming, public safety and academic delivery modules.
If a growing percentage of students are living off-campus, schools should be willing to recalibrate their marketing and promotion of clubs, organizations and athletic events to meet this reality. If more students are commuting to campus — typically from work — public safety patrol rotations and class locations can be adjusted to ensure student safety.
Perhaps most importantly, distance learning may become more of a desired option for students balancing tuition and housing costs and time constraints for classes, internships and studying.