MONTGOMERY — A combination of teamwork and an exciting new opportunity for free tuition is credited by Interim Vice President for Student Affairs Roy Simmons for BridgeValley Community & Technical College’s impressive increase in enrollment.
WV Invests, a grant program that offers tuition-free enrollment to community and technical colleges in West Virginia, motivated many students to pursue the more cost-effective education route. Statewide enrollment numbers reflected a drop in West Virginia’s public four-year colleges, while there was a rise for community and technical colleges; and BridgeValley led the pack.
Year-over-year, BridgeValley boosted its class of first-time freshmen by 38.3 percent, increasing from 379 in 2018 to 524 in 2019. Overall enrollment for both campuses increased by 5.2 percent, including both recruitment and retention efforts.
Simmons explains that he led his team to focus on recruiting students who would most benefit from WV Invests, instead of pushing particular programs.
“I would attribute the rise in enrollment to our increased visibility and renewed focus,” he said. “We equipped every member of the Student Affairs department to be a recruiter, essentially boosting our team from 3 to 30.”