New students gathered at a huge New Student Orientation event at the Hatheway Cultural Center prior to the start of the fall semester. Credit: L&C MARKETING & PR
New students gathered at a huge New Student Orientation event at the Hatheway Cultural Center prior to the start of the fall semester. Credit: L&C MARKETING & PR

GODFREY – Lewis and Clark Community College is seeing a turnaround in enrollment trends for the 2023-2024 academic year.

“We are excited to see enrollment figures increasing again as we continue to develop new opportunities to impact access and agility for students and to serve the community’s needs,” said L&C President Ken Trzaska.

Tenth-day enrollment figures for Fall 2023 showed increases across the board, including total student headcount (5.6 percent), credit hours (8.9 percent) and both high school partnership (dual credit students in the high schools – 7.2 percent) and non-high school partnership students (4.8 percent, compared to the previous fall.

Student headcount totaled 4,196.

Spring 2023 also saw increases compared to Spring 2022. Total headcount was 4,007 students, up 9.6 percent from the previous year – with credit hours at 32,869, an increase of 5 percent. Notably, part-time students (2,852) and part-time credit hours (16,061) were also up, 15.7 percent and 12.8 percent, respectively, while online headcount and credit hours actually decreased, a possible sign that some students coming out of COVID are trying to get back to classes on campus, according to Vice President of Student Affairs Cherise Jackson.

These numbers provide a snapshot of each semester’s enrollment, to be reported to the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB).

A number of directed efforts have likely contributed to this turnaround, including a more personalized outreach approach to moving students through the “enrollment funnel.”

“Our high school liaisons have done an amazing job with getting our high school students registered in classes,” Jackson said.

New Director of Enrollment Management Aamer Chaudhri has made a concerted effort to follow up with hundreds of inquiries (up 23.52 percent over last year) and applications (up 13.85 percent over last year) to continue enrolling more and more students and stay ahead of the curve. He and his team also continue to visit schools in the community to inform them of the benefits of attending Lewis and Clark.

“I’m the product of a community college, and I wouldn’t be where I am today without that foundation,” he said. “Lewis and Clark is the best place to train for your career or complete the first two years of a four-year degree while saving thousands of dollars.”

Chaudhri is hopeful that with these contacts and continued outreach, the upward trend will continue.

Students are now enrolling for Winter Intersession and Spring 2024 classes. Since registration opened in mid-October, 66 students have enrolled for Spring 2024 (as of Nov. 2), an increase of 57.14 percent over this time last year.

Winter Intersession courses begin Dec. 18, 2023, and run online over the winter break, wrapping up Jan. 12, 2024. They are 8 weeks long but offer full course credit and can be transferred to most colleges and universities.

Spring courses begin Jan. 16, 2024.

To get started, apply at www.LC.edu/admissions or call (618) 468-2222.

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