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Some Michigan Community Colleges See Big Declines in Summer Enrollments

Michigan’s Washtenaw Community College and Grand Rapids Community College are seeing steep declines in summer enrollments due to the coronavirus pandemic, reported the Detroit Free Press.

At the Washtenaw college, registration was down 11% on March 12 for summer classes, compared to the same time in 2019. After the school said it would go online, in response to the campus shutdowns due to the pandemic, registration for summer classes fell further: 36.%% behind a year earlier at the same time. As of April 15, registration moved up some, but still remained below year-ago figures, down 26%.400 Coronavirus 4833754 1920

On March 12, the Washtenaw college was down 11% in registration for summer classes compared to the same time in 2019. At that point, the college was planning to offer face-to-face instruction. On April 3, after the school said it would go online only, registrations were 36.5% behind 2019’s number. By April 15, that had clawed back some, leaving enrollment registration down 26%. The percent lost is mirrored in the number of credit hours students are planning to take, according to numbers shared with the WCC board in a special meeting Friday afternoon.

The Grand Rapids Community College is also looking at a significant decline for the summer, according to its president, Bill Pink. The school has decided to waive fees and is pushing employment-oriented classes into its second summer session.

A third Michigan two-year institution, Alpena Community College’s summer registrations appear to be the same this year as they were a year ago. That’s mainly because students taking this community college’s summer sessions are those who are taking them at home at lower costs than at their four-year institutions.  Still, college president Don MacMaster said he is concerned about fall enrollments.

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