The Changing Faces of Today’s College Students

The Changing Faces of Today’s College Students
  • Opening Intro -

    College students are more diverse than ever before, but I’m not talking about race, ethnicity or gender.

    Rather, the atypical college student of yesterday is not so typical today -- students are older, many are attending two-year schools or studying for their degrees online.

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Changing Faces

Collectively, today’s college students can be of most any adult age and their approach to education is often different from how students were educated a generation ago.  According to Universities.com, an online guide to on-campus and distant learning programs, the U.S. student population grew by 72 percent between 1970 and 2000, with perhaps even greater growth rate for the decade just ended.

Today’s college students have many more options available to them which means that the student attending four-year college upon graduating from high school represents just one group of student being educated today.

Student Statistics

The undergraduate population being educated right now is broken down as follows according to the federal National Center for Education Statistics:

  • 39 percent of students are part-time
  • 44 percent of students attend two-year colleges
  • 56 percent of students are women
  • 39 percent of postsecondary students are 25 years of age or older
  • 73 percent of students defy the stereotype of an undergrad that earns a high school diploma, enrolls in college full-time directly afterwards, depends on their parents for financial support, and doesn’t work more than part-time

Online schools offer the most flexibility for students, allowing them to study at a time and place of their own choosing and at a speed that is right for them. Students who want to enjoy the “college experience” are more likely to enroll in undergraduate degree programs, pursuing their Associate or Bachelor degree with some choosing to go for their Master’s.

If you’re considering returning to college in 2011, explore your many options. Financial aid, based on need, can make a difference so fill out your FAFSA as part of your enrollment process.

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