By NICHOLAS TRUJILLO
The percentage of enrollment and retention is on a downward trend at Pima Community College.
Retention is defined as students completing their college courses and graduating with the college. This process does not have to be on time, though.
According to Complete College America, only 5 percent of students in America complete their two-year degree on time. At PCC, 6 percent of students complete their credits and graduate on time.
Yet, 14 percent of PCC students are taking three years to complete their two-year degree, while 19 percent finish in four years. The other 61 percent of students are either dropping out or transferring to another school.
Karrie D. Mitchell, assistant vice chancellor for enrollment management and student affairs, provides up-to-date reports about the school’s enrollment each month. In each email, she gives possibilities as to why the retention may be so low.
“Students have life circumstances that come up which make it so they can’t return and complete,” Mitchell said. “We are hoping that as students have a more defined support network through Guided Pathways, which includes an assigned advisor and counselor, that they will be able to provide greater resources and support for students in these situations.”
In order to improve retention rates, Vice President of Instruction Gregg Busch, Mitchell and GPS are all looking in key areas from where they think students and staff could benefit.