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Enrollment and Retention

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Note from the editor

College enrollment took a hit during the fall of 2020, but schools didn't feel the impact equally. Community colleges felt the blow much more deeply, and those that rely on international students may have experienced a significant drop-off in their numbers.

Some schools have attracted students during these difficult times by offering additional support. Others are finding success retaining students by adopting models designed to help them chart a clear path to graduation.

In this Trendline, we look at the pandemic's impact on enrollment and how colleges can ensure students stay on course.

Hallie Busta Senior Editor

Colleges reenroll stopped-out students during the pandemic

Early data shows enrollment declining among students who previously left college with no credential, but some schools are making inroads.

How are community colleges paying for guided pathways?

New research found the amounts can be steep, but schools implementing the promising model have shifted budgets and secured new funding.

Number of international students in US declines for first time in over a decade

A separate survey found the number of new foreign students plummeted in fall 2020, though a significant number of deferrals offers hope.

500,000 fewer students attended US colleges in fall 2020

Final figures from the National Student Clearinghouse also break down the losses by major.

Tips for boosting spring enrollment

Fall numbers appear dismal. Higher education experts offer several tips to improve student headcount for the next term.

Impact of COVID-19 on enrollment and retention

College enrollment took a hit during the fall of 2020, but schools didn't feel the impact equally. Community colleges felt the blow much more deeply, and those that rely on international students may have experienced a significant drop-off in their numbers. In this Trendline, we look at the pandemic's impact on enrollment and how colleges can ensure students stay on course.

included in this trendline
  • Number of international students in US declines for first time in over a decade
  • 500,000 fewer students attended US colleges in fall 2020
  • Tips for boosting spring enrollment
Our Trendlines go deep on the biggest trends. These special reports, produced by our team of award-winning journalists, help business leaders understand how their industries are changing.
Davide Savenije Editor-in-Chief at Industry Dive.