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No longer a small community college

COC enrolls more than 23,000 students this fall

Posted: August 25, 2008 9:49 p.m.
Updated: October 27, 2008 5:01 a.m.

Students walk to class in the late afternoon on the first day of class at College of the Canyons on Monday. COC's enrollment is up 12 percent compared with the first day of classes last fall.

With more than 23,000 students enrolled for the first day of classes Monday, College of the Canyons can no longer be called a small community college.

Enrollment was up 12 percent at the school's two campuses, compared with the first day of classes last fall.
While the official enrollment numbers will not be known for several months as students add, drop and change classes, enrollment is definitely up, according to COC spokeswoman Sue Bozman.

"It's not uncommon for community college enrollments to go up during economic downturns, and many colleges around the state are reporting they are up 5 or 6 percent or more, but our numbers are really pretty high," Bozman said. "Also, we used to be a small college, but now we're in the large college range."

Students returning to COC's Valencia or Canyon Country campuses will notice some changes made over the summer. At Valencia, students will be taking classes for the first time in the new physical education addition, the East Physical Education building.

"It is extremely exciting since our original P.E. building was designed for a student population we surpassed years ago," Bozman said. "There's a new gym, offices and locker rooms, and it's really very nice."

Valencia students will also have access to six new state-of-the art tennis courts.

"We've never had tennis on our campus before, so having them will allow us to add tennis to our physical education program," she said. "The Santa Clarita community has a lot of folks interested in this sport, so we're pleased to be providing such great new facilities."

COC's Canyon Country campus has a newly-paved parking lot, plus a complete array of student services including a bookstore, food services, library, tutoring center, student health and wellness center and financial aid office. After just one year in existence, the Canyon Country campus is also showing much higher enrollment numbers.

"The Canyon Country campus is starting its second year today - I can't believe what's been accomplished since last year," Bozman said.

Both campuses are offering classes in a new format this semester, with the GO and PAL programs. Through these programs, classes are offered in five-week formats, serving people who prefer this schedule over attending a full semester of a class.

"The enrollment in the classes is good, and considering that we didn't have any of these classes in our printed schedule of classes, we believe the good enrollment shows the community wants this format," Bozman said.


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