High school grads in El Paso say pandemic has changed their college plans

Education

EL PASO, Texas (KVIA) — As the pandemic continues, colleges across the country are preparing in the event fewer students enroll in the fall. The American Council on Education predicts that college enrollment will decline by roughly 15% nationwide this year.

A graduate of Eastwood High School said that losing senior year traditions was tough, and told ABC-7 that now, many of her friends and classmates have changed their college plans too.

“High school isn’t that big of a deal and it really isn’t compared to what’s going on right now, but it still hurts,” Christina Enriquez said. “Some of them of them might have decided to do community college instead of doing university due to the cost and because we may be online this fall semester.”

Enriquez said the virus weighed on her decision between the University of Texas at El Paso and another university out-of-town.

“It definitely made me think of staying of home because something really drastic just happened and a lot of people got stuck out-of-town and in college,” she said. “They weren’t able to come home, so it definitely made me think of staying near home in case anything like this happened again.”

Enriquez ultimately decided to enroll in UTEP for the fall.

The American Council on Education predicts the enrollment decline nationwide could lead to an estimated $23 billion in lost revenue for schools across the country.

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