Community college enrollment drops 15% for men nationally since the start of the pandemic

Written by on September 24, 2021

Community college enrollment drops 15% for men nationally since the start of the pandemic

By Chloe Nouvelle

September 24, 2021

Photo | Courtesy of Northampton Community College

Community college enrollment declined as COVID-19 swept across the country. But research from the National Student Clearinghouse shows more men than women opted out of 2-year institutions last spring. 

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Nationally, the percentage of men enrolled in community colleges dropped by nearly 15% compared with only a 6% drop in women.

Robert McGann, vice president of enrollment at Northampton Community College (NCC), said the gender disparity in enrollments is nothing new. At NCC, women make up about 60% of the student population.

“The trends we’re seeing now are not unfamiliar, they are very common. The COVID pandemic has magnified some of these trends to a greater degree,” said McGann.

McGann added that the recent large drop in the number of men enrolling at institutions of higher education highlights the “economic priorities and pressures” they’re experiencing. 

In an attempt to even out gender representation on college campuses, McGann said some schools are looking at things like reevaluating admission practices or establishing new outreach initiatives. However, McGann said he’s not aware of any targeted male recruitment efforts at NCC.

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