September 21, 2015
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Chief Communications Officer
Growth in Running Start continues
VANCOUVER, Wash.–Monday, September 21 marked the start of the 2015 fall quarter at Clark College. While official numbers are not available until after the 10th day of class, the day began with 11,187 students enrolled, or 4 percent fewer students than the first day of the 2014 fall quarter. This decrease in enrollment is consistent with numbers throughout the state, as a strengthening economy has softened the enrollment spike seen during the recent recession. Oregon two-year colleges are also experiencing significant decreases in enrollment.
While enrollment declined overall, some specific segments saw increases. Running Start, which allows high school students to earn college credits while still in high school, saw its enrollment rise by 14 percent from its fall 2014 numbers to more than 2,200 students. Elearning (or online) courses grew this year by 5 percent, with more than 3,700 students taking advantage of those courses. The college continued to see slow but steady growth in students of color, up 1 percent compared with fall 2014. Students of color now make up 31 percent of Clark’s student body.
Clark College students on campus for the first time on Monday saw significant progress on the new Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) Building. The groundbreaking for that building was held last fall, and classes are slated to begin being held there in fall 2016. Some construction to the culinary area is also scheduled for this year, in preparation for a significantly restructured and modernized Culinary Arts program. C-TRAN’s Bus Rapid Transit Project is likely to also bring some minor construction near the main campus this year as well.
About Clark College
Located in Vancouver’s Central Park and serving up to 14,000 students per quarter, Clark College is Washington State’s largest single-campus, for-credit community college. The college currently offers classes at three satellite locations: one on the Washington State University Vancouver campus; one in the Columbia Tech Center in East Vancouver; and one in the Columbia River Gorge in Bingen, WA. Additionally, its Economic & Community Development program is housed in the Columbia Bank building in downtown Vancouver.