What will be for higher ed in 2020?

Gazing Into Higher Ed’s Future
Inside Higher Ed, September 22, 2011

“College enrollments and degree completion will continue to boom for the rest of this decade, but who enrolls (and finishes) will vary widely and, without a major change, far too few Americans will complete college to achieve the ambitious goals that President Obama and others have set for the country.

Those are among the conclusions that might be drawn from a series of projections on educational attainment that the U.S. Education Department released on Wednesday. The report by the National Center for Education Statistics, “Projections of Education Statistics Through 2020,” looks out (with full acknowledgment of the limitations of the crystal-ball gazing) at how everything from first grade enrollments through doctoral awards might look at the end of the current decade.”

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One comment on “What will be for higher ed in 2020?

  1. Bryan Marinelli says:

    I would not designate this article as a key resource for our project — mainly because it seems pertinent to the current Strategic Plan — but it raises several points of interest. According to this piece, although the number of high school graduates will decrease over the course of the next decade, post-secondary enrollments are still projected to increase, with more 25- to 29-year-olds going to college. Hispanic and Latino enrollments are projected to “greatly outpace those of other racial groups.” And by 2019, women are expected to make up 59% of all college students. How prepared is Providence College for these changing demographics? How actively is the College recruiting and preparing for these groups? What kinds of programs and services will these students seek and require?

    Overall, colleges and universities are expected to award “significantly more of all types of degrees” in the next seven years (Note: The U.S. Education Department also projects that both for-profit and non-profit, private colleges will see a slight decline in the number of students that they enroll and graduate). This increase will be “insufficient to reach the ambitious college completion goals that President Obama, along with several leading foundations and a veritable chorus of nonprofit groups, have embraced as a national higher education strategy.” However, if colleges can take advantage of current, unexpected enrollment increases (emanating from the bad economy, intensified interest in work force-relevant certificates, and sharp rises in Latino enrollments), these ambitious completion goals may be achievable.

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