FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEContact:
Arkansas Department of Higher Education
LITTLE ROCK, AR – The number of students enrolled in Arkansas higher education on the 11th day of classes is down 0.7 percent overall as compared to last fall with a total of 167,406 students at all public and private institutions.
Dr. Brett Powell, Director of the Arkansas Department of Higher Education, said of the enrollment decline “Some decline in community college enrollments naturally occurs as economic trends and job prospects improve. On the other hand, we know that many Arkansans are unprepared for the jobs of tomorrow so we hope to reverse this trend in coming years by reaching out to adults without any postsecondary credentials and students coming out of high school who typically enroll in higher education at lower rates.”
Four-year institutions saw an average increase in enrollment of 1.6 percent while the two-year institutions saw a decrease in enrollment of 5.4 percent. Total public institution enrollment decreased by 0.9 percent.
Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia had the highest increase in enrollment, growing its student body by 16.7 percent to 4,138 students enrolled. University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff saw an increase of 5.8 percent with 2,658 students enrolled. University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences raised its enrollment by 4.5 percent with 3,021 students enrolled. University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Arkansas State University of Jonesboro, University of Arkansas Fayetteville, University of Central Arkansas, and Arkansas Tech University also saw increases in enrollment, while others had decreases ranging from 1.6 to 5.1 percent.
Two-year institutions with the highest increases include Southern Arkansas University Tech with an increase of 6.4 percent with 1,658 students while University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville had a jump of 5.4 percent totaling 1,388 students. Arkansas State University Newport surged their enrollment by 5 percent, bringing its headcount to 2,599; and University of Arkansas Community College at Hope, University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton, Southeast Arkansas College, Arkansas State University Mid-South, National Park College, and Cossatot Community College of the University of Arkansas also had increases in enrollment.
Among independent institutions, total enrollment increased by 0.7 percent, ranging from an increase of 13.2 percent at Arkansas Baptist College to a decline of 41.7 percent at Shorter College. Baptist School of Nursing decreased enrollment by 10 percent and Jefferson School of Nursing decreased by 15.9 percent.
The most significant enrollment change for the fall was among high school students enrolled in college or university courses. Over 17,000 high school students are taking classes this fall, an increase of 8.1 percent.
The Arkansas Department of Higher Education is responsible for carrying out the policy directives of the AHECB, reviewing college and university academic programs and developing funding recommendations for the state’s 11 public universities and 22 public two-year colleges as well as several other post-secondary entities. In addition, the agency is responsible for distributing approximately $150 million annually from state revenues and lottery funds. For more information, visit www.adhe.edu.