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2014 May 23 - 04:09 pm

La. College Enrollment Jumps

New Job Training Programs Fuel Increase

HOUMA, La. (AP) — Several programs at Fletcher Technical Community College experienced notable growth this spring, increasing overall enrollment by 9 percent.

The Courier reports (http://bit.ly/1foUfkR) the college’s total enrollment is at 2,254 students, representing an overall increase of 185 students compared to last spring’s enrollment of 2,069.

“We are very pleased with these enrollment numbers,” said Fletcher Chancellor Travis Lavigne. “Our faculty, staff and students work very hard to make the college a success.” (See related story, Community College Week, March 31, 2014) Both the school’s marine operations and integrated production technologies programs have increased enrollment by over 40 percent. The college recently opened its 30,000-square-foot BP Integrated Production Technologies building on the Schriever campus, and this summer the college will open the marine operations building at the Louisiana Marine & Petroleum Institute campus in Houma.

Marine operations has seen enrollment jump to 227 students from 158 last year while integrated production technologies has expanded nearly 50 percent with 140 students signed up for the program. “It is difficult to attribute the enrollment increase to one factor alone,” said Mickey Diez, interim vice chancellor of academic affairs and dean of student services. “However, our recent efforts have been to increase the focus on our students.

“Everyone at the college works hard to ensure that our operations, processes and procedures are customer friendly,” he added. “Also, we are always assessing to ensure that we are offering services and programs that students need to be successful.”

The dean also said more high school students are attending Fletcher due to its low tuition rates and advanced training opportunities.

Fletcher plans to add a student services building to the main campus in Schriever, which will house offices such as admissions, financial aid, registrar, testing, counseling and career services. The building will serve as a one-stop shop where students can obtain all of the services they need for enrollment.

Once the college raises the private match of $613,636, it will be able to proceed with plans for the new building, Diez said. The building is estimated to cost $5.1 million, and the state is paying about $4.5 million.

Construction will begin in a year or two, Diez said.

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