OVER a thousand students have enrolled at Northern Marianas College for the spring semester which began last week.
NMC said enrollment “continues to remain at a strong level” despite the ongoing challenges of Covid-19 pandemic.
As of Jan. 26, NMC Interim President Frankie Eliptico said 1,147 students had registered for the spring semester, and the number may increase when students register for classes in the second session of the semester.
He said NMC “is bucking the national trend — many other colleges and universities across the U.S. have seen declining enrollment.”
According to statistics from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center cited by higher education publication Inside Higher Ed, community college enrollment is down 10.1% this past fall 2020 when compared to the previous fall.
“It’s a big improvement compared to last semester when we weren't able to take classes on campus,” said Joyce Javier, an NMC business management major taking one in-person class this semester.
“It helps with morale — being around each other. It feels like you’re not alone when taking a class,” she added.
“So far, the spring semester is going along nicely,” Jaden Sanchez, another business major at NMC said. “It’s a very unique experience.”
Last year, NMC classes migrated to an online platform for the most part to maximize safety of students and employees during the pandemic.
Now, as restrictions ease, the college is increasing the number of classes that are held face-to-face or that have a face-to-face component.
“Our staff and faculty have also been working very hard to prepare our campus for the spring semester,” Eliptico said as he acknowledged “hardworking employees — faculty and staff — for their commitment and dedication to NMC students.”