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Published 11/10/2003
Owens Ranks First in Enrollment Growth Among All Ohio Colleges and Universities

Owens Community College Continuing to serve as Northwest Ohio's number one choice in higher education, Owens Community College is once again recognized as the fastest-growing academic institution in the state of Ohio. According to a recent study by the Ohio Board of Regents, Owens ranks as the leader in Fall Semester headcount enrollment growth among all of Ohio's public colleges and universities.

The combined enrollment of 19,615 students on the Toledo-area and Findlay-area Campuses is a 1,148 increase in headcount over the 18,467 students enrolled during Fall Semester 2002. Ranking second in headcount enrollment growth is Columbus State Community College with a 1,077 increase over last year. Four of the top five educational institutions within the fall enrollment study are community colleges.

In comparison, 295 fewer students are attending the University of Toledo for the fall term and Bowling Green State University's fall semester enrollment has declined by 119 students.

"Receiving the distinguished number one ranking for headcount enrollment growth is quite an honor for Owens Community College," said Dr. Bill Ivoska, Owens Vice President of Student Services. "The phenomenal growth Owens has experienced for over a decade is credit to the College's outstanding faculty and staff. Their commitment to providing students with the maximum amount of educational choices is why this College is considered one of the premiere academic institutions in Ohio."

Since becoming a comprehensive community college in 1994, Owens has nearly doubled its Fall Semester student enrollment by an astounding 91 percent. In addition, the College has the distinction of experiencing 26 consecutive semesters of increases in enrollment.

Two years ago, Owens was cited as the fastest-growing community college of its size in the United States by "Community College Week", a national publication serving community, technical and junior colleges.

Among the reasons that Owens' enrollment has skyrocketed in recent years can be attributed to the ever-increasing number of area residents choosing to complete their first two years of course work at the College.

Of the 19,600 students enrolled for the Fall Semester, 40 percent are first time college students. These individuals are taking advantage of Owens' enriched learning opportunities following the completion of their high school education.

According to Ivoska, the College has already enrolled over 5,500 students for the Spring Semester, which is a 45 percent increase compared to last year at this time.

"We are very pleased that such a significant number of new and current students are choosing to further their college education earlier within the Spring Semester registration process," Ivoska stated. "By registering early, individuals will have the ability to choose from a wider selection of academic course offerings to accommodate their busy schedules."

For students like Marquita Johnson of Toledo, the educational experience she is receiving at Owens has been everything she could have envisioned - and more.

"Owens is a great place for any student to pursue their college education," said Johnson, a freshman majoring in business and dance, who currently has a 3.5 grade point average. "My goal is to someday run my own dance studio. The decision to attend Owens is providing me with the best opportunity to realize my dream."

In addition, Johnson is impressed with the helpfulness of her professors. "It's easy to ask them questions," she said. "They are always available to offer help when I need assistance."

Following graduation from Owens in fall of 2004, Johnson intends on pursuing her bachelor's degree at Wright State University or Temple University.

Top 15 Ohio Public Colleges & Universities Based on Headcount Growth
Rank Colleges & Universities Headcount Fall
Headcount Fall
1 Owens Community College 19,615 18,467 1,148
2 Columbus State Community College 23,299 22,222 1,077
3 Ohio State University 50,731 49,870 861
4 Sinclair Community College 23,588 22,917 671
5 Lorain County Community College 9,618 9,096 522
6 Stark Technical College 5,665 5,155 510
7 Cuyahoga Community College 23,808 23,324 484
8 Cleveland State University 16,905 16,523 382
9 Central Ohio Technical College 2,574 2,222 352
10 Walters College - University of Cincinnati 4,347 4,015 332
11 University of Cincinnati 26,817 26,552 265
12 Wright State University 15,694 15,443 251
12 Clermont College - University of Cincinnati 2,659 2,408 251
13 Northwest State Community College 3,348 3,103 245
14 Cincinnati State Community College 7,722 7,539 183
15 Central State University 1,621 1,440 181
Source: Ohio Board of Regents 2003 Preliminary Fall Enrollment Study

On the Toledo-area and Findlay-area campuses, Owens serves more than 40,000 credit and non-credit students making it the number one choice for new college students. Owens is committed to providing small classes, personal attention and unmatched affordability. Owens Community College offers over 130 program areas in Agriculture, Business, Fine and Performing Arts, Health, Public Service, Skilled Trades, Industrial and Engineering Technologies. Owens students also can earn the first two years of a bachelor 's degree with a smooth transfer to any area four-year college or university.


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