College attendance falls

Kim Braeckeveldt travels to Grand Haven once a week for college classes.
Krystle Wagner
Sep 19, 2013


The Holland woman is one of 255 students taking Muskegon Community College courses at the Grand Haven Community Center this fall.

Although enrollment for the Grand Haven location has exceeded expectations, overall admissions for the local college is down by about 4 percent, said Dr. John Selmon, vice president of student services for the Muskegon-based college. The college has a little more than 4,800 students, down from last year's 5,600.

Lee Coggin, president of the Baker College Muskegon Campus, said they expect 5,200 students to enroll this fall, which is down by about 300 from last year.

Selmon attributed the drop in enrollment to the economy and workforce picking up, and people are taking either fewer or no credits.

“That’s probably the No. 1 pattern,” he said.

Another cause for the decrease could be the large number of students graduating from the college and not returning for more classes. Selmon said more than 700 MCC students received degrees last year.

While overall enrollment is down, the community college is seeing more veterans and incoming freshmen. MCC has 841 first-year students this fall, up from 827 last year.

Braeckeveldt said she’s taken classes at Grand Valley State University and Davenport, but they don’t compare to what MCC has to offer, especially at the Grand Haven campus.

“I like the smaller class sizes,” she said.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.



unless you are getting a degree in a specific field, college is not worth the fluffy degrees just to have a degree. College can not replace a good work ethic (which is hard to find these days). People might be catching on to the college scam. Most good jobs don't require a degree but rather the willingness to work your way up through a company with hard work and dedication.

Michael Johnson

Unfortunately, our society all too often confuses "college education" with job earnings...not surprising in a society that values money over knowledge. Although this will not change the minds of all those who "know better," college is about depth of experience and breadth of knowledge, not career training. It is also about exploring wide viewpoints and broadening horizons in order to find one's vocation and learn something about the way others view the world rather than one fixed perspective. The real problem is a society that believes "value" can only be measured by one's economic status - and a society that pushes real education further and further from its citizens by catering to the one percent that makes a true liberal arts education unaffordable to the masses.


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