Survey Reveals How the Ongoing Pandemic Has Affected Community College Students

November 5, 2021

Share this

Title: The Continued Impact of COVID-19 on Community College Students

Source: Center for Community College Student Engagement (CCCSE)

A new analysis of survey data by the Center for Community College Student Engagement (CCCSE) finds that many community college students are still struggling in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and certain student populations have been affected more than others. CCCSE administered a special-focus module in their annual Community College Survey of Student Engagement to 120,833 students across 273 institutions. Findings from the survey are summarized below:

  • In spring 2021, 34 percent of students reported their personal finance situation was worse than it was prior to the pandemic. Non-traditional students (25 years and older) and full-time students were most likely to report their financial situation was worse.
  • Among survey respondents, 23 percent reported they were struggling to pay for college as a result of the pandemic. Data from the survey shows that COVID-19 seems to have impacted the ability for students to pay for school among students of color more than white students. An additional 20 percent of students cited struggles with paying for school that were not related to the ongoing pandemic.
  • Students taking classes in person reported they “strongly agreed or agreed” (59 percent) they have tried to avoid campus situations where they are unable to maintain social distance of at least 6 feet.
  • Students who are enrolled full-time were more likely to report their awareness of campus services to support them during the COVID-19 pandemic (47 percent) than part-time students (43 percent).

CCCSE concludes their report by providing campus leaders with a list of critical questions to assess what support services are working and what should be changed to meet evolving student needs.

Click here to read the full report.

—Danielle Melidona

If you have any questions or comments about this blog post, please contact us.

Keep Reading

Reducing Barriers to Transfer for Community College Students

While access to a high-quality and affordable college education is essential, access means little if students are unable to meet their educational goals once they arrive, writes Jon Turk. A new brief from ACE and Hobsons explores upward transfer—the movement from a community college to a four-year institution—for students who matriculate soon after high school.

May 1, 2017

Erasing the Community College Stigma

ACE’s Jon Turk argues that community colleges are the solution to many of the challenges we face around higher education affordability, access, and success. But how do we convince students and families of their value?

June 26, 2019

Discovering Hidden Barriers to Community College Enrollment and Success

When students apply to a community college, they expect enrollment to be a clear, orderly process. Unfortunately, for far too many students, it feels more like a maze, full of unknown steps, unfamiliar terminology and unexpected delays.
David Bevevino of the Education Advisory Board looks at how community college student onboarding is like a game of Chutes and Ladders—and what institutions can do to change it.

October 24, 2016