Fewer Wisconsin high school students are going to college. A hot labor market may be the reason. (Enrollment up at UW-Green Bay campuses)
“…While every two-year UW System school has had substantial enrollment losses over the past decade, three have seen recent increases. Enrollments at UW-Green Bay campuses in Marinette, Manitowoc and Sheboygan have gone up between 8.7 percent and 18.8 percent amid the pandemic. UW-Green Bay Chancellor Michael Alexander attributes that to the university’s Rising Phoenix initiative enabling high school students to earn two-year associates degrees before pursuing four-year bachelor’s degrees in those cities. Alexander said UW-Green Bay is also purposely ceding ground to local technical colleges. “We’re still going to offer associates degrees as part of what we do,” Alexander said. “But we’re not going to compete for a student who’s necessarily choosing between us and the technical college.”
Sarah Burmesch is in her third year with UW-Green Bay and enrolled in a hybrid nursing program offering an associate of arts and sciences from the Sheboygan Campus in her hometown, an associate degree in nursing from Lakeshore Technical College and an online bachelor of science degree in nursing from Green Bay’s main campus.
“This was a really safe option just to come and take some classes while I was trying to figure out my life,” Burmesch said. “And also, I know this is talked about a lot, but it’s really helpful to have smaller class sizes rather than having big class sizes, so you can actually get to know your teachers and have more one-on-one help.”