Council on Postsecondary Education
FALL ENROLLMENT AT KENTUCKY COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES HITS RECORD HIGH
Preliminary system report shows 4% increase in one year; 40% over decade
More students than ever before are seeing the value of a postsecondary education as estimated enrollment in Kentucky’s public and independent colleges and universities hit an all-time high with more than 270,000 students enrolled this fall.
Total fall enrollment increased approximately 4 percent in one year, and 40 percent over the last 10 years, according to a preliminary fall enrollment report issued Sunday at a meeting of the Council on Postsecondary Education. Final fall enrollment numbers will be available in the spring.
“These students have chosen a college education because they see the value that it can bring to their lives, in terms of employability, higher personal wages and personal satisfaction,” said Bob King, president of the Council on Postsecondary Education. “A more educated Kentucky is a key in spurring the Commonwealth’s economic recovery.”
The all-time enrollment high represents an increase of 9,465 students across the public and independent sectors. Key findings of the report include:
- The Kentucky Community and Technical College System led the public sector with a 6 percent enrollment increase in one year, with 106,500 students enrolled. Over the past 10 years, KCTCS enrollment has grown by 79 percent.
- The public universities estimated modest total enrollment growth of 1.5 percent over last year. The University of Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky University and Northern Kentucky University had the largest one-year increases in undergraduate enrollment from the prior year, while Kentucky State University and Murray State University both increased enrollments significantly at the graduate level.
- Western Kentucky University, Northern Kentucky University and Kentucky State University reported the largest increases in total enrollment over the past 10 years.
- Kentucky’s non-profit, private colleges and universities experienced steady enrollment growth at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, with total annual growth of 5 percent.
- The proprietary sector reported the largest percent growth compared to last fall, with Sullivan University expanding by an estimated 10.5 percent, primarily at the graduate level. Although less than 10 percent of students attend proprietary institutions in Kentucky, year-to-year growth in this sector is strong, following national trends.