Garden City Community College’s projected goal of 19,200 total credit hours was realized in the final tally for 2014’s 20th Day certification roster for spring enrollment when the college registrar recorded 19,365 credit hours that gave the college an over three percent increase in enrollment. Those credit hours represent 1,291 full-time equivalent (FTE) students who averaged 15 semester credit hours each.
“This represents a 3.3 percent increase in credit hours over 2013,” said Nancy Unruh, GCCC registrar. “Although we dropped in total number of students in attendance from 1872 in 2013 to this year’s 1845, those enrolled this semester are taking more credit hours than their counterparts a year ago and continues our upward credit hour and FTE trends.”
According to President Dr. Herbert Swender, GCCC is one of the few Kansas higher education institutions that experienced growth during this spring.
“Garden City Community College continues to show growth at a time when many higher education institutions are showing a decline in both total numbers of students and in credit hours taken,” said Swender. “A 3.3 percent growth over the 2013 spring semester validates our employees’ commitment toward student success.”
The demographics for the spring classes show students from six countries and 41 states with an average age of 26 years. Females still dominate the student body at nearly 55 percent.
“As one would expect, the majority of our students are classified as freshmen (51.2 percent),” said Unruh. “But the number of high school and younger participating in coursework at GCCC continues to climb (367 students) and is closing in on the number of sophomores enrolled (383 students).”
Swender believes the continued growth can be attributed to several factors including the popular four-day class week, the addition of instructional programs as well as expansion of intercollegiate athletics.
“The Monday through Thursday class week allows students who choose to hold full or part-time jobs to now have the opportunity to work more hours and the ability to be involved in their hometown activities” said Swender. “The new track and field program added 65 students to the campus this year. Simply put, the collective efforts of our admissions and financial aid departments, faculty, coaches, and staff are making a positive difference resulting in the growth of GCCC.”
Other demographic highlights in the spring enrollment report include: