Private colleges lead state in graduation rates
A new analysis of the latest numbers shows that more than 26,000 students entered Minnesota colleges as full-time students in 2003; 40% of them graduated in four years or less and 60% graduated within six years. Minnesota Private College Council (MPCC) member institutions had the highest four-year graduation rate at 64%. This continues a longstanding trend.
In terms of raw numbers of students entering and exiting in four years, the efficiency of MPCC institutions is pronounced. While Council members enrolled half as many first-year students than the public institutions, four years later the number we graduated was larger. See the Education Pipeline chart below.
Timely graduation is an important indicator of effective institutional management. Higher graduation rates are indication of appropriately targeted student recruitment, effective campus communication, strong advising and accessible student support services. The academic preparation of student, colleges' admissions selectivity and student demographics also influence graduation rates.
For students, graduating in four years can minimize costs associated with additional tuition and any borrowing-related expenses. It also starts them earning income earlier than their later-graduating peers.
For more information and data on Minnesota's college graduation rates see the Research Foundation's graduation rate report.