Here are three reports to know about this month:
1. Undergraduate enrollments seem to have stabilized this fall — including at community colleges — and there’s been an uptick among freshmen, with public two-year colleges seeing the biggest bump, according to final fall enrollment data from the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC) Research Center. In fall 2022, overall undergraduate enrollment shrunk by -0.6% (about 94,000 students) compared to fall 2021. Among community colleges, enrollment was essentially flat (0.4%, 16,700 students), though dual enrollment largely drove that increase. First-time freshmen gained in all institutional sectors, with the largest numerical growth among community colleges (6.1%, or 42,000 students), followed by public four-years (3.9%, or 34,000).
2. According to a new U.S. Department of Education (ED) a report, nearly one in two community college students received a grant through the federal Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) in 2021.Nearly 6 million community college students received direct financial aid through HEERF, with students getting an average grant of $1,290, according to an ED fact sheet on community colleges. More than nine in 10 (94%) of community colleges said that HEERF allowed them to keep students who were at risk of dropping out enrolled by providing financial support.
3. The Great Resignation has led to the Great Retraining, especially in the technology workforce, according to a new report from the Cengage Group. The company this fall re-surveyed Great Resigners — those who left their jobs during the Covid pandemic — to see how they are doing in their new jobs. More than four out of five of them have no regrets about quitting, and 85% are satisfied with their new jobs. Only 6% are considering going back to their previous job. Access to employer-sponsored training played a role in where job switchers decided to go, with two-thirds saying it was an important part of their current job. Sixty-four percent of Great Resigners noted their current employer pays for online training or upskilling opportunities; 56% said their previous employer did not offer this. Of those whose employers cover online training, 89% plan to take advantage of the opportunity to upskill further.