INA - More students than ever before are pursuing a valued education at Rend Lake College.
RLC is continuing its record-setting pace and passing previous enrollment records established two years ago. And, according to RLC President Mark Kern, figures are on track to set future firsts as more and more students are enrolling in the rewarding programs RLC has to offer.
Students enrolled in an unprecedented 73,618 credit hours in the 2005-2006 school year –2,170 more than in 2004-2005, according to statistics provided by Mary Bornheimer, Interim Dean of Student Services. That seemingly unbeatable figure may be bested this year as 10th day figures are forecasting another record setting enrollment.
“We are anticipating another record-setting year,” Bornheimer said.
As of now, students are enrolled in 30,933 credit hours in the current semester, without dual-credit hours being included. That is only 835 hours lower than the record Fall semester last year.
Enrollment for Fall 2006 is expected to be “significantly” up once dual-credit numbers are factored in, according to Bornheimer.
A good portion of the college’s increase in enrollment over recent years is by dual credit through partnering high schools. Dual credit for the Spring 2006 semester was 4,718 of the 33,553 total credit hours. According to Bornheimer, dual credit accounts for 8,000 to 9,0000 credit hours each year.
Kern credited successful starts in the brand-new Fabick Caterpillar Heavy Equipment Technology and Wireless Information Technology programs. The Fabick HEQT program has 26 students enrolled and the Wireless Tech program has more than 21 students.
“That’s exceptional for brand-new programs,” he said.
Another sign that RLC is heading toward another record-breaking year is summer enrollment. RLC taught more students in 2006 (7,992) than ever before in a summer term and increased enrollment 11.9 percent from summer 2005.
Enrollment in the 2006 Spring semester (33,553) increased by 840 credit hours from Spring 2005. Headcount for Spring 2006 (7,593) was up slightly from 7,571 in Spring 2005.
The 30,236 credit hours taken by students in Fall 2005 was a 5.6 percent increase from the previous year and was 243 credit hours more than the Fall 2003 record.
The Rend Lake College district came into existence July 1, 1967, and encompasses parts of eight counties, including the major portions of Franklin, Hamilton, Jefferson and Perry counties. Large areas of Wayne and White counties also are included, as are small portions of Washington and Williamson counties.
It covers 1,850 square miles – the 11th largest district statewide in terms of area covered – and serves more than 40,000 households and 13 public high schools.