University enrollment down

Chico State falls under 14,000 students, the lowest count in two decades

Chico State campus. (Photo by Ryan Guy, via Wikimedia Commons)

Dipping to the lowest level in at least 20 years, fall enrollment at Chico State was 13,850 at the start of the semester.

In the past two decades, the university’s enrollment has ranged between 15,500 and 17,800 but has been declining since 2017, when there were 17,789 students.

Jerry Ross, Chico State’s vice president for enrollment management, said myriad factors have contributed to the decline, including impacts of wildfires, the pandemic and a strong labor market. In response, the university has added admissions staff and focused on recruitment data and analytics, he said, and is encouraged by a 4 percent increase of incoming freshmen compared to last year.

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