Dalton State Hispanic Enrollment Tops 25%


After hovering around the 25 percent mark for the last several semesters, Dalton State’s enrollment of Hispanic students vaulted to 26.8 percent this fall, qualifying the College for Hispanic Serving Institution status, a designation that officials say will benefit the entire campus community.

Dalton State has long led the University System of Georgia in enrollment of Hispanic students, a fact reflected in the USG’s fall enrollment report released today. While Dalton State’s overall enrollment is flat for the fall semester, increases were seen in Latino and dual enrolled students.

At 5,164, students, Dalton State lags behind last fall’s enrollment by 24 students.

“I am pleased to see our enrollment for Fall 2017 remains strong and especially proud to see the growth in our Hispanic/Latino enrollment,” said Dr. Margaret Venable, president of Dalton State. “I am pleased about the Hispanic/Latino population in particular because these students are statistically underrepresented in higher education, and we understand the need for our student demographics to reflect the population of our community and this country.”

This fall Dalton State enrolled a total of 1,383 Latino students, or 26.8 percent of the student population. Georgia Gwinnett College is second of the USG’s 28 colleges and universities with 20 percent of its student population reporting to be of Hispanic/Latino descent, and Georgia Highlands College is a distant third with 14.2 percent.

“While our overall enrollment remained flat from fall 2016 to fall 2017, we have experienced growth in some key population segments,” said Dr. Jodi Johnson, vice president for Enrollment and Student Services. “We exceeded the 25 percent Hispanic population requirement for HSI status this fall by almost 2 percent. Earning this designation opens the door to new opportunities including federal and private foundation grants that will assist all Dalton State students as they progress towards graduation.”

In addition, Johnson pointed to an increase in the College’s dual enrolled students.

“The dual enrollment population at Dalton State continues to grow as more high school students and their parents make the decision to earn college credit at no cost before they graduate from high school,” she said.

This fall, 385 high-achieving high school students enrolled in college classes either on the Dalton State campus or on-site within their high schools.