Guam – The theory, “if you build it, they will come” is proving to be true at Guam Community College. Since 2009, the college has added more capacity via new and renovated buildings, and this fall GCC again experienced record enrollment – for the seventh year in a row – as 2,661 students registered for classes.
The number represents a 3% increase over fall 2012 enrollment. In the last seven years, enrollment at GCC has more than doubled.
“We are very excited that more people continue to want to improve their employment opportunities and their lives by taking classes at GCC. Our program additions, coupled with our renovation and expansion projects, have all been planned with enrollment increases in mind. This increase is a good problem to have, and we are handling it with student success and industry needs at the forefront of everything,” said Dr. Mary Okada, GCC president.
“The dedication that the administration, staff, and faculty put into making GCC a better place is reflected by the amount of students choosing to come to GCC,” said Jennifer Esteves, a student and the GCC Council on Postsecondary Student Affairs president. “An enrollment of over 2,600 students demonstrates that GCC is on the right track!”
[Students attend the 2013 GCC Spring Festival in front of the new Student Center in February 2013. Fall 2013 enrollment increased over 3%, to 2,661 students – the highest enrollment ever at the college.]
Statistics on the high enrollment figure also reveal the economic challenges facing many on the island. A majority of the students enrolled are attending classes part-time, and close to 70 percent of those enrolled are receiving federal financial aid assistance, according to Patrick Clymer, GCC Registrar.
Consistently, the top three programs in which students enroll at GCC are Criminal Justice, Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences (IAS), and Education.
“Those three programs articulate in their entirety over to the University of Guam, so that students who graduate from GCC with an associate’s degree can transfer their entire degree over to UOG, where they can then enroll in the baccalaureate program as juniors,” noted Dr. Ray Somera, GCC Vice President for Academic Affairs. “As we continue to prepare students for the workforce, this is yet another option for them.”
In 2012, GCC received the maximum six-year reaffirmation of its accreditation from the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, Western Association of Schools & Colleges (ACCJC-WASC). For more information, please log onto www.guamcc.edu.