COVID-19 impacts on college enrollment

The Air Force Academy and University of Colorado Colorado Springs are seeing a decline in enrollment this year but Pikes Peak State College and Colorado College are seeing an increase. You can see the enrollment numbers from 2019 to 2022.
11 News this Morning at 6 am
Published: Aug. 22, 2022 at 6:10 PM MDT|Updated: Aug. 23, 2022 at 5:14 PM MDT
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - Students and professors at many of our local colleges started classes today. 11 News is speaking with higher ed schools to see how their enrollment numbers are looking.

The Air Force Academy and University of Colorado Colorado Springs are seeing a decline in enrollment this year but Pikes Peak State College and Colorado College are seeing an increase. You can see the enrollment numbers from 2019 to 2022.

The Air Force Academy and University of Colorado Colorado Springs are seeing a decline in...
The Air Force Academy and University of Colorado Colorado Springs are seeing a decline in enrollment this year but Pikes Peak State College and Colorado College are seeing an increase. You can see the enrollment numbers from 2019 to 2022.(Brian Sherrod, KKTV)

You can see the biggest drop comes from the Air Force Academy. The college went from having more than 11,000 applicants last year to almost 8,400 applicants this year. This is a 28% drop.

Pikes Peak State College tells 11 News they are seeing a 7% increase this year because they added new four year programs and kept their cost low.

Colorado College tells 11 News this year marked the third consecutive year of record applicants with 11,026.

Representatives from our local colleges tell 11 News they are trying their best not to drop any classes because of enrollment.

“We are really trying to be sensitive to where students are and if that class gets canceled, we can offer them somewhere to land because we can’t afford to lose them,” said Warren Epstein, executive director of marketing and communication for Pikes Peak State College. “We absolutely can’t afford to lose them.”

“There are some classes that actually work better in remote environments whether it’s hybrid or in synchronous or synchronous setting; meaning that it’s online or not,” said Chris Valentine, assistant vice chancellor of marketing and communications, University of Colorado Colorado Springs. “We have created a lot of new technology that helps. You don’t have to drive to class for all of your classes.”

All of the colleges are back to normal in person schedules and some classes can be remote. The Air Force Academy is the only college making COVID vaccinations mandatory this year.

Editor’s note: Pikes Peak State College, formerly Pikes Peak Community College, changed its name earlier this year. The name change was made official under House Bill 1280.