CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Fewer people are deciding to pursue higher education nationwide. According to the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, there are 4 Million fewer students in college now than there were 10 years ago.
However, in the Coastal Bend, the President of Del Mar College, Mark Escamilla, said they are expecting a rebound from the pandemic.
"Going into Fall of 2021, we thought we were going to recover but you know, and we all know, COVID had not let up in 2021." said Escamilla. "
Del Mar's enrollment numbers reflected a decline during the pandemic. In 2019, the Fall Credit Headcount was at 12,008. That number is close to the college's all time high of 12,263, reported in Fall of 2010.
However, after 2019, the numbers started to drop. The fall headcount hit 10,678 in 2020 and10,395 in 2021. 2022's preliminary findings for fall was presented to the Board of Regents in a November meeting. It showed a headcount of 9,725. Escamilla said the data is incomplete and they are expected to receive more accurate numbers in December.
"We've enrolled a significant number of students that aren't included in that report, along with some preliminary spring enrollments, they're showing some very positive signs." he said.