Hinds enrollment up slightly in Vicksburg

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 29, 2000

Total enrollment at Hinds Community College’s Vicksburg branch is up slightly, but the number of students taking college credit classes is down.

The 7.8 percent drop in students working toward a degree or certification reflects a drop in local high school graduates last year, said Hilton Dyar, dean of the Vicksburg branch.

“Obviously, our main source of students is the graduates of Vicksburg Warren School District,” Dyar said. “When their numbers are down, our numbers reflect that.”

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Vicksburg High and Warren Central graduated a combined 391 students in 2000, down from 433 for the Class of 1999.

The figures for credit students at Hinds showed a similar drop: 686 now, compared to 744 last year.

New courses offered over the Internet may also have had an effect on the numbers, Dyar said. Although Hinds experimented with work-at-home Internet correspondence courses last spring, the offerings were expanded this semester.

“That’s the wave of the future,” he said. “But it has some funding implications; it’s more difficult than a head count of people walking into your building.”

All students enrolled in Internet courses at any of the Hinds facilities are included in enrollment figures for the Raymond campus, Dyar said.

The drop in students pursuing college credit was more than offset by a big jump in the noncredit area, which includes GED students and training courses sponsored by industries.

There were 20 such noncredit students enrolled at this time last year; now there are 156.

Those numbers can be deceiving, though, since noncredit classes can begin and end at any time, and enrollment fluctuates throughout the semester.

Overall, across Hinds Community College’s six campuses, enrollment is up 4.3 percent, to 14,409, despite dropping a few students in its academic and high school program areas.