Student mix getting older at many campuses
If you envision undergraduate students at Minnesota colleges as made up entirely of fresh-faced 18- to 22-year-olds, you’d be wrong. A growing number of students at four-year colleges are now aged 25 or older.
Whether students delay college to work, volunteer, have a family, join the military or for some other reason — the mix of students is changing on some Minnesota campuses.
At the 17 member institutions of the Minnesota Private College Council, 14% of the total undergraduate population is in this age category, with the percentage at three institutions ranging from 31 to 41%. At the University of Minnesota, 10% of undergraduates are in the older cohort, as are 20% at MnSCU four-year schools.
Although MnSCU two-year schools and for-profit institutions still lead in age 25+ enrollment, some campuses that previously enrolled mostly traditional students are attracting more older students. Concordia University, St. Paul is a leader in adult enrollment among private colleges, with more than one-third of its undergraduates aged 25 or older. “We are thrilled to see a 6% increase in our adult undergraduate enrollment over last year, said Kim Craig, Concordia’s director of adult undergraduate and graduate admissions. “This is significant and can be attributed to our commitment to offer programming that leads to jobs and our intentional outreach to local community colleges.”