College Market to Slow, Change

One of the reasons that entrepreneurs uncover opportunities and start to build firms around campus is that the campus is a huge market that experiments, has many clear segments, and seems to continuously grow. There are changes afoot however.

According to Alan Finder of the NY Times, “Projections show that by next year or the year after, the annual number of high school graduates in the United States will peak at about 2.9 million after a 15-year climb. The number is then expected to decline until about 2015.” Here is some more:

Nationally, the population decline is projected to be relatively gentle, with the number of high school graduates expected to fall in the Northeast and Midwest, while continuing to increase in the South and Southwest.

The number of white high school graduates will go down nationally, and the number of African-American graduates will remain relatively steady. But the number of Hispanic and Asian-American graduates will increase sharply, according to projections by the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education, whose demographic estimates are highly regarded by admissions officials.

And so admissions officials are scrambling to attract Hispanic and low-income students, who have been underrepresented at the most prestigious private and public universities. Colleges in the Northeast and Midwest have particularly intensified their efforts to strengthen alumni networks and make themselves better known at high schools in fast-growing states like Texas, Arizona, Nevada, Florida and Colorado. Cornell sent an admissions officer to live full-time in Los Angeles.


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