Enrollment at St. Cloud Technical & Community College is looking up with a growth of 1.5% for the fall 2018 semester.
College enrollment nationwide is steadily decreasing, but with deliberate efforts from faculty and Admissions on retention and recruiting, the college saw an increase from 2017 in both full year equivalent (FYE) at 1.5% and headcount at 3.6%.
SCTCC works with many industry partners in the region as well as the seven universities in Minnesota State to make sure graduates are ready for the workforce or able to transfer easily to earn a bachelor’s degree.
The 40+ programs at SCTCC all have active advisory boards, which consist of area industry representatives to make sure the college provides the right education and training for students’ careers of choice. The faculty at SCTCC update curriculum as needed to stay up-to-date with industry needs and advisory board recommendations.
“SCTCC leverages the voices of our community industry partners by meeting with them twice a year in program advisory boards,” explained Mike Mendez, Dean of Skilled Trades and Industry. “SCTCC also uses this time to seek input on how we can better collaborate with our industry partners to meet their needs for skilled workers, which supports the economic growth of our region.”
Ten programs this fall semester had waiting lists. Many of the programs offer multiple degree options so students can take a faster route to a career with a diploma or choose to further their education with an associate of applied science degree.
In addition to its health, trades & industry, and business programs, SCTCC offers a liberal arts degree for students who want an affordable option for their first two years of a bachelor’s degree. With seven different degree paths, SCTCC’s credits transfer easily to any Minnesota State university.
“SCTCC offers an affordable and convenient way for students to start their college degree, knowing that their credits will count for their bachelor’s degree when they move to a university,” said Melissa Lindsey, Dean of Liberal Arts and Sciences. About half the students at SCTCC are in the liberal arts program.
While the educational offerings at SCTCC are the foundation of the college, staff work hard to make the on-campus experience one that resonates. There are multiple forms of support and engagement for students at all stages: before they apply, while they’re students, to graduation and beyond.
“Our commitment to student success shines through at every stage of the student life cycle. We’ve worked hard over the past year to develop meaningful student engagement strategies to provide the information and service that students are looking for at the time they need it,” said Dean of Enrollment Management, Amie Anderson.
This year’s upward yield in enrollment forms a positive outlook for SCTCC. By focusing on the workforce shortage as a motivator for skills-based careers, as well as promoting an affordable option for a pathway to a bachelor’s degree, SCTCC will continue to increase the focus on attainable and affordable education.