Enrollment Exodus

 

Many Illinois colleges and universities are struggling to attract and keep students.  The problem, along with what some are doing about it, is outlined in the Illinois public radio series Enrollment Exodus. 

On this episode of Statewide, we hear those reports from journalists throughout Illinois.  

This week's lineup:

* Sean Crawford talks with Jenna Dooley of WNIJ, who served as coordinator for the series.  She gives an overview of the problem and what the reporting uncovered.

Logo design by Spencer Tritt

Rich Egger, news director at Tri States Public Radio in Macomb, joins us for a special edition episode of Teachers’ Lounge. Public radio stations across the state collaborated on our “Enrollment Exodus” series chronicling enrollment challenges facing Illinois colleges and universities, especially since the 2015-2017 state budget impasse.

A four-year degree is not the only option for students when they finish high school. But many choose community college in an effort to join the workforce sooner and save on tuition costs.

Community colleges funnel a lot of students into four-year institutions.

So-called articulation agreements like the ones John A. Logan Community College has with Southern Illinois University let students feel secure their credits will transfer, and count toward a degree.

When Francisco Gamino arrived at Parkland College four years ago, he didn’t know how to balance work and find the time he needed to study.

What happens when universities see enrollment plunge year after year? For many Illinois schools, they focus on how to hold on to the students already walking their halls. Students often leave between their first and second year.

RICH EGGER

Tammy Yates was excited to come to Macomb seven years ago. Yates and her partner Chad Hunziker opened Chubby's, a restaurant on West Adams Street, just a few blocks from the Western Illinois University campus.

"Just the vibe of the whole campus in 2012 was happy. It was positive and people were having fun," said Yates.

"It’s a little different now."