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Neosho Daily News - Neosho, MO
  • Crowder branch campuses spurring college's growth

  • As Crowder College has continued to spread out across Southwest Missouri, their enrollment numbers seem to have benefited from the college’s recent expansions.
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  • As Crowder College has continued to spread out across Southwest Missouri, their enrollment numbers seem to have benefited from the college’s recent expansions.
    While Crowder officials reported a 3.33 percent enrollment increase for August, 180 more students than at that time last year, a large portion of the reported growth has taken place at the nine locations other than the main campus in Neosho.
    Jim Riggs, director of admissions, presented a fall enrollment report to the Crowder Board of Trustees on Monday morning at their monthly board meeting.
    According to that report, the campuses seeing the most increase in student enrollment based on unduplicated numbers are Webb City, Cassville and McDonald County.
    Riggs said the unduplicated enrollment numbers show a student taking classes at more than one location as an enrollment number only for the campus other than Neosho.
    “If a student attends a site they are in these numbers completely counted at that site,” Riggs explained.
    Based on those figures, enrollment at the McDonald County site increased by 181.48 percent. However, McDonald County also offers a new nursing facility in Pineville this semester, in addition to the courses taught at locations in Jane.  
    McDonald County’s enrollment jumped from 54 students to 152 students this semester.
    In Webb City, 119 additional students enrolled in courses, a 15.23 percent jump from last year.
    At the Neosho campus, unduplicated numbers show a decrease in enrollment, down to 3,368 students. However, total enrollment shows a much larger number at Neosho, 3,967 students, which reflects that roughly 600 students are taking advantage of Crowder’s alternate locations as well as the main campus.
    This year’s enrollment numbers also included five sites for the first time: Carthage, Greenfield, Lamar, Monett and Mt. Vernon, which in total sees 323 students. 
    “You can’t say too much about the fact that we have these locations now,” Riggs said. “The opportunity to serve the students in our service area, opportunities we’ve never had before. I think you’re going to see significant growth because of that.”
    Riggs said though Crowder’s enrollment has continued to grow, several colleges are currently seeing a decrease in enrollment numbers. 
    However, Riggs said he thinks Crowder will continue to fare better than those with decreasing enrollment.
    “I don’t think it’s going to be unusual,” Riggs said of the decreasing enrollment trend. “I think we’re going to hold our own perhaps much better.”
    As the college’s enrollment grows, its locations are also still growing.
    Marble told trustees on Monday that fundraising for the new McDonald County campus is only “a couple hundred thousand” short of the $1.5 million goal.
    Page 2 of 2 - The current amount raised for the new campus is listed at $1,359,800.
    “We’re just right at the edge of having that finished,” Marble said.
    Groundbreaking on the future McDonald County campus, to be located on Larry Neff Drive in Jane, is expected to take place in the spring of 2013.

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