Updated: January 3, 2013 6:01AM
Moraine Valley Community College officials said that although the 2012 fall total enrollment at the school declined from a year ago, it still surpassed the 18,000 mark for the 10th consecutive semester with a total of 18,290 students.
Credit enrollment dropped to 16,650 students, but noncredit enrollment rose to 1,640 students compared with fall 2011 noncredit enrollment of 1,593, officials said.
“In these difficult economic times, we are pleased that we can provide educational opportunities to so many of our community members,” college president Sylvia M. Jenkins said. “We applaud their efforts to obtain a degree knowing that it opens up a brighter future for them, their families and their communities.”
Moraine Valley’s decline reflects the trend the nation’s community colleges have been experiencing for the past several years after recording record enrollments, said Mark Horstmeyer, director of college and community relations at Moraine Valley.
“Usually when the economy softens, enrollment spikes at community colleges, but this time around the economic woes worsened and has taken its toll on students’ discretionary spending,” Horstmeyer said. “For many, many students, they first have to pay the bills and then see what’s left over. In many of those cases, there is not enough, so their education plans are put on hold.
“Community colleges such as Moraine Valley are still a bargain compared with four-year universities and colleges, and continue to make up the vast majority of students enrolled in higher education,” Horstmeyer said. “We continue to seek ways to help more students’ educational goals become a reality.”
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