Reasons behind the Current College Enrollment decline

Earning a college degree is an integral part of the great American Dream. College education not only opens more career opportunities for individuals but also polishes their social skills. Despite these benefits, enrollments in higher education institutions have been declining for the past six years.

According to studies, enrollments in four-year for-profit academic institutions decreased by 6.8%, while the rate of enrollments in four-year non-profit higher education platforms dropped by 0.4% in spring 2018. While the rate of decline may seem minor, it represents an alarming trend in higher education.

Here are some reasons that could be contributing to the declining college enrollment rates in the country.

1. Lack of financial resources

College tuition and student-loan debt today is higher than it has ever been before. According to studies, more than 44 million U.S. citizens currently hold an estimated $1.5 million in student loan debt.
High school graduates with a lack of financial education and resources face unusual challenges during the college application and admissions process. Consequently, they refrain from applying altogether, which leads to a decline in the rate of enrollment. 

2. Poor Career Counseling

During school years, students with inconsistent attendance or academic records often assume they will be unable to get through college in the future. Lack of proper career counseling at this stage can further solidify this belief. As a result, students often fail to pursue higher education. 

3. Mismanaged Enrollment Systems

Mismanaged college recruitment could also be one of the contributing factors to the current enrollment decline. College systems aren’t always completely transparent and free from bias. These systems fail to forecast the magnitude of applicants and properly assess each candidate according to their abilities.
Poor enrollment systems are also unable to anticipate the financial needs of incoming students, which ultimately leads to a decline in college enrollments.

Higher education institutions are primarily responsible for making efforts to counter the decline in college enrollment rates. One way to tackle this issue is to integrate modern technology, such as predictive analytics, into the current college enrollment management system.

Interested in learning more about the benefits of data science and analytics in college enrollments? Get in touch with us!

Virtue Analytics offers multiple scholarship estimator tool for students’ college financial planning and extensive college enrollment management solutions that systematically analyze enrollment markers to optimize recruitment. Our team of highly qualified data scientists, engineers, academicians, and management consultants work together to deliver solutions tailored according to the needs of each institution.