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SOWELA Achieves highest student retention rates among state’s community colleges

SOWELA sees record increase in enrollment
SOWELA sees record increase in enrollment(SOWELA)
Published: Feb. 25, 2021 at 11:29 AM CST
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - SOWELA has been greatly impacted by both COVID-19 and two hurricanes, but student enrollment was not affected, school officials say.

SOWELA maintained a retention rate of 83.71% from Fall 2020 to Spring 2021- the best semester-over-semester retention rate from any community college in Louisiana, according to information from SOWELA.

SOWELA was also recently named WalletHub’s #1 community college in Louisiana for the third year in a row, ranking the state of Louisiana #27 in the U.S. out of 698 community colleges.

“SOWELA is very proud of the strong enrollment growth the college has experienced in the last several years,” Chancellor Dr. Neil Aspinwall said. However, the key to the longevity of this growth is retention. We continually do the important work of students recruitment and engagement but the real test is if we can get these students to persevere and complete their study programs.”

Online, hybrid and in-person courses have been offered since the start of the semester on Jan. 19. Many of SOWELA’s programs shifted to online or hybrid options in response to COVID-19, and will continue through the Spring 2021 semester.

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