Hastings college officials are saying there is an overall competitive environment for universities throughout the state, and students weighing out their school options are looking into a number of factors; financial aid options, extracurricular opportunities, and they're also asking if a bachelors degree will translate to a job.
Although official enrollment numbers won't be available until September 24th, the numbers this year are slightly down.
Kevin Wright, fourth year Hastings College student, said the Bachelor of Science degree is necessary for the next step of his student career, medical school. But it's not the only reason he decided to attend Hastings College.
Wright said, "I got some really great scholarships that have helped make coming to Hastings [College] affordable, and I think that's one of Hastings strengths the scholarships they're able to provide to students."
Hastings College president, Dennis Trotter, said "Last year we had our peak at 1,146; we graduated a large class and 2 small classes behind that. We'll probably be around 1,050 to 1,080 [students] this year."
Trotter said although a BA or BS degree does not necessarily ensure a job after graduation, "that group has been much more successful and protected than those that don't have a degree."
Students also said they are very cautious with financial aid loans. Hope Geiger, sophomore at Hastings College, said "The [loan] interest was pretty high [last year]. I decided to opt out of it this year, my parents are going to cover my first 2 years, and then I'm going to have to take another loan my last 2."
The tuition fee has hiked 4.8% according to Trotter, but he said the net cost for students to attend the college went down, because of financial aid.
Trotter said he would also like to add more alumni programs to the campus.