The headcount enrollment for the 26 institutions of the University System of Georgia (USG) in Fall 2019 was 333,507, representing an increase of 1.5 percent (4,795 students) over the Fall 2018 enrollment of 328,712, according to USG’s Fall 2019 Semester Enrollment Report. This continues a six-year trend of modest increases in student enrollment within USG. This fall also marks the fifth consecutive year of growth to reach an all-time high in the number of students enrolled in USG institutions.
Meanwhile, enrollment patterns varied by institution across the USG. Headcount enrollment grew by 3.8 percent in research universities and 1.8 percent in comprehensive universities. Enrollment declined by 1.2 percent at state universities and 2.5 percent at state colleges. Enrollment increased at 11 institutions, while 13 had a decline and 2 were relatively flat.
East Georgia State College was one of the institutions that saw a decrease in students. The current enrollment at EGSC is 2,741, down from Fall 2018 which was 2,942 students. This number is made up of 307 Dual Enrollment students, 1,765 freshmen, 514 sophomores, 99 juniors and 37 seniors.
“State colleges in Georgia, like similar institutions across the county, must respond promptly to the demographic changes which are already resulting in enrollment declines such as those experienced this semester by 15 of the 26 University System of Georgia institutions,” said EGSC President Dr. Bob Boehmer. “East Georgia State College is already implementing plans to respond to these demographic changes. These include expanding our efforts to reach out to adults in the region who are changing careers, adults with some college but no degree, military personnel, and students who are place bound and need access to online degree programs. In addition, these plans include continuing our strategic efforts to increase the number of high school graduates in our region who choose college following high schools. All of these efforts are critical to the economic success and social well-being of this great region which means so much to all of us.”
These changing enrollment numbers are reflected across the region EGSC serves, with Savannah State University down 9.5 percent, South Georgia State College down 5.5 percent and College of Coastal Georgia down 0.3 percent. Increases at Augusta University of 2.2 percent and Middle Georgia State University 3.4 percent give some insight into this trend, where more students are choosing to start their college careers at larger institutions in the region.
EGSC’s student body for Fall 2019 is made up of 5.2 percent Hispanic/Latino students, 0.4 percent American Indian/Alaska Native, 0.8 percent Asian, 45.9 percent Black/African-American, 0.1 percent Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander, 43.2 percent white, 3.4 percent two or more races and 0.8 percent unknown or undeclared race.