The sharp drop in enrollment felt at San Diego City College since 2010 is beginning to reverse, but not enough to save many long-afflicted classes from being eliminated this semester.
“Classes keep getting cut; it means it’s a longer process for me, and then I’m not going to be able to get a job in the field that I want,” Crystal Martinez, a Radio, TV, and Film (RTVF) major told the San Diego Community College District trustees at a meeting last spring, urging them to maintain classes.
According to data collected by the district’s Office of Institutional Research and Planning, the number of students attending City College at the start of the Fall 2016 semester stood at 16,483 students. Enrollment has hovered at around 16,000 since 2014, and while no longer declining, these figures still represent a 7.5% drop from an all-time-high of nearly 18,000 students in the Fall of 2010.
As of Sept. 12, a total 12 classes in the RTVF Department were cancelled this semester, according to the online class schedule.
City College’s Associated Student Government is also feeling the crunch of low interest, as the student-run body began the academic year with unfilled Academic Senate positions and no acting Scholarship Officer.
Most of these positions have been filled by appointment as of Sept. 23.
“When we don’t have somebody who’s dedicated to this, the work gets spread around which makes it difficult to put events together,” Inter-Club Council President, Gregory Barba, said in reference to the open positions after an ASG meeting on Sept. 2.
According to the ASG website, many administrative jobs also remain open but have been unfilled for some time.
“We’re used to it,” said ASG President, Daron Woods. He explained that ASG members have had to learn to be flexible in the face of vacancies.
Though the enrollment crunch would seem to correlate with the ASG’s openings, Barba said the issue is more complicated.
“I don’t think there is a direct relationship there,” Barba said. ” I think the issue is student apathy.”
It’s unclear why City’s enrollment is declining. Enrollment at Mesa and Miramar, the two other colleges in the district, has seen stable and rising, respectively, since 2010.