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College Enrollment in Tennessee Has Declined

MARTIN, Tenn. - According to the Tennessee Higher Education Commission, college enrollment in Tennessee has declined.

The commission released what’s called “College going and the class of 2021” report.

It shows the number of people attending college has been going down over the past five years.

Class of ‘21 University of Tennessee at Martin alumna Callie Dunlap believes the economy plays a part.

“I mean just look at the price of everything. Everything is going up, including college tuition. It just goes up higher regardless of what’s happening. The cost of education just goes up higher and higher every year.”

Dunlap also believes Covid-19 may have something to do with it.

“One of them is 2020’s quarantine. I think a lot of people had time to self-reflect and realize, “Hey maybe I don’t want to jump into college after high school.”

University of Tennessee at Martin communications professor Richard Robinson believes that the idea of going to college now is different from when he went to college.

“Growing up it was understood in my family that me and my brother were going to go to college. My parents believed in college, they both had college degrees, my mother worked at a college, so they said, “You’re going to go to college and get a degree". That was the way it was back then, not so much now in that there are other opportunities and things.”

The college-going report shows in Madison County, only around forty-four percent of high school graduates continue higher education.

For the full report, you can check the Tennessee Higher Education Commission’s website.

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