Enrollment Continues to Climb at Hudson Valley Community College

September 19, 2023

Guenther Enrollment Services Center sign and mums

Enrollment has risen at Hudson Valley Community College over the past two years, as more students are choosing to start or continue their higher education at the one of the Capital Region’s largest undergraduate institutions.

The college announced on “census” date, Sept. 19, that enrollment for the Fall 2023 semester was up 3.5 percent over last year. The total number of students in credit-bearing courses this fall is 7,674, compared to 7,397 in 2022.

The numbers are even higher when considering what the college counts as FTE (full-time equivalencies), which takes into account the total number of courses all students – full-time and part-time – are taking. Total FTE this fall is up 4.2 percent year over last, an increase of nearly 6 percent over the Fall 2021 incoming class.

What’s driving the growth? The largest increase, percentage-wise, is the college’s high school offerings, which grew 29 percent year-over-year. A total of 370 students are taking college-level courses in high schools around the region through Hudson Valley’s College in the High School.

Also seeing growth over last year are the number of transfer students (up 13.1 percent), non-matriculated part-time students (up 8 percent) and returning students (up 2.2 percent).

While more students are returning to the campus and the classroom, the college has also responded to the need for greater flexibility among its students, who are often juggling work and family responsibilities with their studies. The number of online, remote and hybrid (both on campus and online) courses have continued to rise over the past several years.

In Fall 2018, for example, 493 of the 2,490 total course sections taught – 19.8 percent – were either online or hybrid. This semester, 1,086 of 2,456 course sections are scheduled to be online, remote or hybrid, which is 44 percent of all course sections being taught.

Hudson Valley students also are taking advantage of expanded financial aid opportunities. According to data from the State University of New York, 44.5 percent of full-time, matriculated, New York State resident students at Hudson Valley attend tuition-free, after aid. That percentage represents students who have tuition fully covered after Pell grants, TAP, grants/waivers, and federal tax credits. Nearly 80 percent of Hudson Valley’s first-time, full-time students benefit from some form of financial aid.

Non-credit personal enrichment and professional development offerings remain popular at the college as well with 6,347 students this past year, a 10.7 percent increase over last year.

“For 70 years, Hudson Valley has provided remarkable access and opportunities to its students, and this is a testament to our extremely dedicated faculty, high-quality programs and talented administrators at the college as well as our long-term partnerships with many education and workforce partners. The college continues to anticipate and adapt to the changing needs of our students and deliver what the future demands, and that is another reason why we are a leader among community colleges across the nation,” said Dr. Roger Ramsammy, president of Hudson Valley Community College.

Hudson Valley is the largest community college in upstate New York, and the third largest in the state. The college’s growth this year is expected to outpace most community colleges in the state. Preliminary numbers provided by SUNY’s 30 community colleges show a 1.9 percent enrollment increase over last year.

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