Full-Time MCC Population Takes a Serious Jump; Overall Headcount Increases

Muskegon Community College has been no such stranger to staggering registration and attendance rates amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, and on this occasion, with the winter semester of 2022 now in full swing, that narrative may have shifted in the institution’s favor. 

The pandemic has everyone in higher education concerned and a little uncertain about the enrollment trends,” said Dr. Kelley Conrad, Vice President of Academic Affairs at MCC. “This semester’s growth of new, full-time students may indicate that the students who graduated from high school during the pandemic, who didn’t attend college right away, are now starting their college careers.” 

MCC has been the subject of a steady decline in enrollment over the past five years, with an 11 percent decrease in student population throughout that timespan. But entering the current semester, MCC has experienced a 27 percent increase in new full-time students by comparison to the winter of 2021, from 37 students to 47 in that timeframe. 

There was, however, a slight decrease in overall full-time student headcount in that same span of time, going from 1029 students to 1008. This loss is compensated over the increase in part-time student headcount, going from 2446 students to 2534, a 3.6 percent increase. 

“The overall increase in part-time students, and decrease in full-time students, though, may indicate the pandemic continues to disrupt students’ family, work, and school lives,” said Dr. Conrad. “Many of our students are parents, and having children who are learning remotely or quarantining, can certainly affect attending college classes.” 

Overall headcount has seen a slight increase, going from 3475 students to 3542 since the winter semester of 2021. 

MCC has recently unveiled its new academic 5-year plan, which will span from the academic years of 2022 to 2026. This plan has been implemented with three primary goals in mind: Access, Equity, and Excellence. These goals are set up to help attract new students and allow MCC to place itself amongst the best community colleges in the nation. 

“What I know for sure is that MCC has a Strategic Enrollment Management Plan with a strong team of professionals who work hard to help students access the great opportunities we have at MCC and to ensure that once students begin, they are given the support they need to continue,” Dr. Conrad concluded.