Southeast Community College has decided to take an unconventional route to stem declining enrollment: add new classes.
Community colleges throughout the country have had to deal with flat or even declining enrollment.
The Southeast campuses at Lincoln, Beatrice, and Milford have seen enrollment grow by less than a percent in the past 10 years.
Southeast Community College President Paul Illich says the college is making moves it believes are right for the two-year school, not because of national trends, but to meet demand.
“Because that’s really our key mission is to meet the demand for higher education in our service area and, of course, there is student demand and there is employer demand,” Illich tells Nebraska Radio Network affiliate KLIN. “So, I think there’s a great deal of opportunity here.”
Illich says surveys indicate that more would enroll at Southeast if wait lists were reduced and classes could be offered at various, non-conventional times.
The number of new students enrolling at Southeast peaked in 2010 with 7, 600. Around 6,200 new students enrolled last year.