Posted: September 08, 2009
by Business NH Magazine
Fall enrollment at Manchester Community College is at record levels, with more than 2500 students beginning fall classes recently, an increase of 12 percent over last fall 2008, and 25 percent over fall 2007.
This is the college's fourth consecutive semester of record enrollments.
While enrollment is up in many programs, the most significant increase - 80 percent - is in the liberal arts program. "We've long been known for the quality of our technical programs," says MCC Interim President Ron Rioux, "And enrollment in those programs remains strong. This growth in the liberal arts programs - fueled by students who plan to transfer to four-year colleges to complete their bachelor degrees - demonstrates that the message is getting out that MCC is a great way to begin a four-year degree. We're an economic value because NH's community colleges have the lowest tuition in the state, and an educational value, because our small classes mean our professors get to know their students' names, strengths and challenges. Students who may in the past have gone directly to a four-year program are starting here and saving thousands of dollars in tuition for their first two years...and getting a quality education at the same time!"
Other significant increases are in the accounting, automotive technology, education, medical assisting and medical coding programs.
Community colleges are usually counter-cyclical to the economy, Rioux adds, with enrollment increasing in times of economic downturns. "Many of our professional and technical programs are eligible for Workforce Investment Act funding, so WIA-qualified dislocated workers can get the training they need here to start a new career or upgrade their skill sets and improve their marketability."
In addition to the term that began Aug. 31, MCC offers a second fall term beginning Oct. 26. The college also runs a number of non-credit skills training courses throughout the year. A complete schedule of credit and non-credit courses is available at www.mccnh.edu and click on Course Schedules.