Program Enrollment in the Florida Community College System. Data Trend 19.Report as inadecuate

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This report addresses program enrollment in the Florida Community College System (FCCS), focusing on possible reasons for and solutions to the decline in community college enrollment. The FCCS produced a set of enrollment headcount projections in mid-1997 that indicated that the system would be serving 330,000 credit students by fall 1999. Instead, preliminary fall 1999 data indicate the number of students will be closer to 310,000. Factors influencing this enrollment decline may include: (1) the number of high school graduates receiving a regular diploma has not increased as quickly as anticipated; (2) the state university system (SUS) has experienced major increases in lower division FTE over the past several years; (3) the Bright Futures Scholarship Program has had the effect of removing the financial differential between the FCCCS and the SUS, shifting students from community colleges to state universities; (4) in order to qualify for performance-based funding dollars, colleges have eliminated many less productive programs, negatively impacting FTE enrollment and increasing student outputs and outcomes; and (5) Florida is experiencing the lowest unemployment rate in 30 years, and employers are spending billions providing on-the-job training, instead of outsourcing to colleges. Solutions suggested include: (1) maintaining the integrity of the "2+2" system; (2) preparing more high school students for college; (3) attracting more younger students; and (4) attracting more older students. (EMH)

Descriptors: Community Colleges, Declining Enrollment, Enrollment, Enrollment Influences, Enrollment Management, Enrollment Projections, Enrollment Trends, Two Year Colleges

Author: Florida State Dept. of Education, Tallahassee. Div. of Community Colleges.


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