Columbia State Community College reached its largest enrollment for the second year in a row. Fall 2018 preliminary census data shows a college-wide headcount enrollment of 6,252 students. That number is up 5.3 percent from last year.
Full-Time Equivalency enrollment is up by 4.2 percent from Fall 2017, and is up over 20.3 percent over the past four years. FTE is the formula that determines how many students are attending full-time.
“We are excited to welcome so many new students to Columbia State,” said Dr. Janet F. Smith, Columbia State president. “The continued growth of the college speaks to the quality of our academic programs and the dedication of our faculty and staff who are committed to helping our students reach their academic goals.”
Three Columbia State campuses have seen significant growth in degree credit enrollment this fall. The Columbia Campus grew by 3.59 percent for a total of 3,175 students. The Lewisburg Campus has 295 students enrolled, which is a 16.60 percent increase over last fall. Enrollment at the Williamson Campus is up 6.82 percent for a total of 2,240 students.
Due to the continuous growth at the Williamson Campus, Columbia State has partnered with the TMA Group | Franklin Transit Authority to provide free public transit rides for Columbia State students through a new “Show I.D. — Ride for Free” campaign. In addition, the college plans to break ground on a new parking structure in early October.
The college also welcomed its largest first-time freshmen class of 1,767 students. The 8.7 percent increase in first-time freshmen is due in large part to the success of the Tennessee Promise program, which allows graduating high school seniors to attend a community college tuition-free. This fall, the college saw a 13.25 percent increase in the number of students receiving Tennessee Promise dollars for a total of 1,359 students.
In addition, Columbia State welcomed 481 students receiving the Tennessee Reconnect scholarship. This brings the total number of adult learners at Columbia State to 1,258, an 11.4 percent increase over last year. The Tennessee Reconnect program provides the opportunity for adult learners who have never earned a post-secondary degree to attend a community college tuition-free.
Final enrollment numbers are to be determined by the Tennessee Board of Regents.