Jun 6, 2022 - Business

Massachusetts colleges see big decline in enrollment

landscape outside harvard university
Harvard University. Photo: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Massachusetts has seen one of the sharpest drops in undergraduate enrollment nationwide since the pandemic started.

Why it matters: The Boston area has long been considered the nation's college capital, home to Harvard University, MIT, Boston University, Emerson College and other schools.

Data: National Student Clearinghouse; Map: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

Details: The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center estimates enrollment has fallen by 11% in the Bay State since March 2020.

  • This spring alone, two-year colleges took the biggest hit, with a nearly 10% drop in enrollment from spring 2021.
  • Other types of colleges, like private and public four-year schools, saw smaller, single-digit declines.

The big picture: The full impact on higher education remains unclear. NSC notes that at least one large private four-year university had inconsistent data over multiple years, making it harder to nail down enrollment estimates.

  • The report does not specify which institution had these gaps in its data.
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