Gathering to Celebrate the New Campus and Record Enrollment

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The mood was ebullient as faculty and staff gathered with Gateway Community College President Dr. Dorsey  L. Kendrick and the administrative team to share coffee and cake and to celebrate the move to the new campus.  Dr. Kendrick noted that they had even more reason to revel: GCC has record enrollment, making it the largest in the state’s community college system. 

“Every time something great happens, we like to celebrate,” she said. “It’s important.” 

The response to the new campus has been overwhelmingly positive and is reflected in the record enrollment of 8,045 students. Part-time enrollment rose 14 percent and full-time enrollment increased by five percent. “That’s not from luck; it’s because of hard work,” Dr. Kendrick said. “Thank you for being there for our students. That is why we do what we do.”

Student growth is particularly strong in recent high school graduates, readmitted students and transfer students, said Vincent Tong, GCC’s Director of Institutional Research. The student body continues to become increasingly more diverse as 23 percent of the student body is African-American and 20 percent is Hispanic. A substantial area of growth came from students coming from New Haven. Those numbers increased by 18.7 percent. GCC also saw substantial increases in students from Madison and Orange.

Dr. Kendrick thanked the faculty and staff for their collective efforts over the course of the complex move from the Long Wharf to the downtown campus. She praised the faculty and staff for their teamwork when getting organized for the move, during the move and for handling the moments when things went wrong. “In spite of everything, people persevered. Not only that you did a great job,” she said.

When she walks around the campus, Dr. Kendrick said, it is heartening to see just how much the students enjoy and truly utilize their new surroundings. Often they stop her to talk about the building and to say thank you, and she passed that on to the faculty and staff. “Thank you,” she said. “Now let’s celebrate!”