Enrollment at colleges and universities in the US was down this spring, the Chronicle of Higher Education reports. It notes that there were about 600,000 fewer students for spring 2021 as compared to spring 2020.
The numbers come from a new report from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, which adds that undergraduate students accounted for the decline, as the number of graduate students enrolled actually increased by 124,000 students. As CNBC notes, the COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for students, especially with the shift to online learning, prompting some students to take gap years. "My family was in a credit crisis … so there were a lot of questions about our livelihood, what's going to happen to my grandparents [in China]. So, there's a lot of stress in the air," Lily Liu, a Stanford University student who took time off, tells CNBC.
The Chronicle adds that some majors like psychology and information science saw increased enrollments. According to the report, enrollment in health professions and related clinical sciences majors at four-year colleges was flat, while enrollment in biological and biomedical sciences majors declined 2.5 percent and science technologies/technicians majors fell 14 percent.