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UCCS fairing better than state numbers that show a drop in college enrollment


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- Although University of Colorado Colorado Springs has seen a slight dip in enrollment numbers over the past three years but recent data this week shows enrollment is climbing back up the university.

Data from Colorado's Department of Higher Education shows that college enrollment dropped 6% statewide between 2019 and 2020. Nationwide, Colorado has an enrollment rate 10% lower than the national average. At UCCS this weeks enrollment compared to this week last year, is actually higher.

While the state blames COVID-19 for the enrollment drops, UCCS said they say the decrease slightly before the start of the pandemic.

When COVID-19 hit, UCCS quickly pivoted to online learning but it wasn't a huge shift for their campus.

Dean of the College of Letters, Arts, and Sciences Lynn Vidler said, "We’ve actually been teaching online since 1996 at UCCS so it’s not a new thing for us."

Now, post-pandemic, the school is adapting once again to make sure they continue to give students the best education they can.

"Work is different now than it used to be. [...] We’re constantly trying to  adjust and adapt to what it is that companies need and the world needs, and what our communities need. Then, helping our students develop those transferable skills to get there," Vidler said.

A concern on many students mind during the uncertain times of COVID-19 was the cost of higher education. Was it worth it?

Vidler said that while jobs teach important practical skills, a college education is invaluable in teaching some of less-tangible skills.

"What they really need is to be able to communicant effectively both orally and in writing. They need to be able to access, synthesize and analyze [...] They need to learn how to learn., how to think critically, how to problem solve, and how to adapt.”

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Riley Carroll

Riley is a weekend anchor and reporter for KRDO. Learn more about her here.


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