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Colleges Column

May 20, 1992 2 min read

Space is still available on many of the nation’s campuses for fall enrollment.

That’s the message from the latest National Association of College Admission Counselors space-availability survey.

Of the 607 institutions responding to the survey, 403, or 66 percent, said openings remain for freshmen in all disciplines. An additional 160 schools have openings in some areas, the survey said.

The survey also noted that 91 percent of the reporting colleges, or 553, indicated that financial aid still is available.

Officials with NACAC noted, however, that most of the aid is likely to be in the form of loans.

Housing is available at 520, or 86 percent, of the colleges responding. A total of 1,224 institutions were surveyed.

Copies of the survey, which includes responses from individual schools, their phone numbers, and a contact person at each school, are available for $5 each from NACAC Publications, 1631 Prince St., Alexandria, Va. 22314-2818; telephone (703) 836-2222.

The estimated enrollment at public, four-year colleges and universities increased to more than 5.8 million during the 1991-92 academic year, a jump of 1.9 percent over the previous academic year, according to a study conducted by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities and the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges.

First-time freshman enrollment continued to decline at rates of 1.3 percent for full-time students and 1.2 percent for part-timers, however, the annual survey said.

But over all undergraduate enrollment increased for the sixth consecutive year, according to the survey. Full-time undergraduate enrollment topped 3.5 million in the fall of 1991, a 1.3 percent increase over the previous school year. Part-time enrollment approached 1.8 million, an increase of 1.9 percent.

Historically black colleges and universities recorded the largest increase, 6.3 percent, to reach a total enrollment of 156,131.

Meanwhile, another AASCU study notes that the share of state budgets going to higher education--after a steady 10-year decline--decreased significantly between 1988 and 1990.

The percentage peaked at 7.65 percent in 1978, declined gradually to 7.25 percent in 1988, and proceeded quickly to 6.87 percent in 1990, the study said. An AASCU official said that when 1991 and 1992 data become available, the deterioration in state funding will be even more prominent.

For copies of the studies or more information, contact AASCU, One Dupont Circle, Suite 700, Washington, D.C. 20036-1192; telephone (202) 293-7070.