In line with an overall decrease in enrollment from fall semester, North Idaho College’s spring enrollment is down similarly. The total headcount for students in spring 2013 is 6,072 students, which is down 5.45 percent from last spring’s 6,422.
“Our decrease in enrollment overall is not unexpected and, in fact, mirrors much of what is happening in higher education regionally and nationally,” said NIC Vice President for Student Services Graydon Stanley. “As the economy improves, prospective or current students have more opportunity for employment and don’t stay or enter into the higher education system. And there is natural attrition that happens from fall to spring semester each year.”
In addition, NIC is now using a new method of reporting enrollment, which was dictated by the state so all enrollment numbers would be comparable among higher education institutions in Idaho. NIC now reports enrollment numbers more than two months later than it has in previous years.
In the past, NIC released its enrollment numbers on the 10th day of the semester. Along with other institutions in the state, however, NIC is releasing enrollment numbers after March 20 as these figures depict a more accurate snapshot of enrollment, accounting for students who have withdrawn or have been dropped for nonpayment as well as dual credit students who have not yet started classes at their high schools by the 10th day of NIC enrollment.
“To compare this semester and last semester is really apples to oranges,” Stanley said. “Future comparisons by the same date will be a much better measure.”
Other spring semester measurements show dual credit enrollment is up, with an overall dual credit headcount increase of 8.6 percent in the program that allows high school juniors and seniors to enroll for both high school and college credit. The total headcount in professional-technical programs decreased 3.48 percent from 804 students in spring 2012 to 776 students in spring 2013, however; the grant funding for two electronic medical records programs concluded, which accounted for a reduction of about 150 students.
“This spring’s numbers depicting a lack of growth in professional-technical education (PTE) programs is not indicative of the big picture. We continue to experience growth and demand in nearly all PTE programs,” Stanley said.
A complete spring 2013 enrollment report will be presented to the NIC Board of Trustees at its monthly meeting at 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 27 in the Edminster Student Union Building Lake Coeur d’Alene Room.